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Full text of "Japanese Warfare: A Summary"

u*32 U. S. Army Military History Institute 

panese 
Warfare 

A Summary 



REGRADCO ^WMMOM* 



f MILITARY INTELLIGENCE SERVICE 
INFORMATION BULLETIN NO. 16 

WAR DEPARTMENT • WAIj^^ty])^. 

UNCLASSIFIED 



Distribution 



Nondivisional units are being supplied with copies on a basis similar 
to the approved distribution for divisional commands, as follows: 



INF DIV 

Div Hq in 

Ren Troop 

Sig Co ... 2 

Engr Bn 6 

Med Bn 

QM Bn 

Itq Inf Regr, 7 ea— - 21 

Inf Bn, ea 54 

Hq Div Arty 10 

FA Bn, 6 ea 24 

150 



CAV DIV 

Div Hq 

Ord Co. 

Sig Troop 

Ron Sq 

Enm Sq 

Med Sq 

QM Sq 

Hq Cav Brig, 3 ea 
Cav Best, 20 ea 
Hq Div Arty 
FA Bn, ea 




(i 
6 
ti 
(i 
f. 

SO 
(! 

IS 

150 



ARMD DIV 

Div Hq 12 

Ren Bn 6 

Engr Bn 6 

Med Bn 6 

Maint Bn 6 

Supply Bn 6 

Div Train Hq 

Armd Regt, M2 ea_._ 04 

FA Bn, ea__ IS 

Inf Regt 20 



150 



For a limited time additional copies of Ibis bulletin may be bad upon 
request. Distribution to air units is being made by the A-2 of Army Air 
Forces. 



UNCLASSIFIED 



MILITARY INTELLIGENCE 
SERVICE 
War Department 
Washington, May 20, 1942 



INFORMATION 
BULLETIN 
No. 16 

MIS 461 



NOTICE 



1. Information Bulletins, which have replaced Tentative Lessons Bulle- 
tins, have a dual purpose: (1) to provide all officers with reasonably con- 
firmed information on the warfare of foreign armies which has been 
compiled from official and other reliable sources, and (2) to serve as 
material for lectures to troops. 

2. This bulletin summarizes the subject matter that has appeared in 
previous bulletins on Japanese warfare and also includes new informa- 
tion received since their publication. Copies of the previous bulletins are 
no longer available. This summary and Information Bulletin No. 14, 
a pictorial guide to Japanese ground and air forces, supplement TM 30-480, 
Handbook on Japonexc Military Forces. 

3. Each command should circulate available copies among its officers. 

Reproduction within the military service is permitted provided (1) the 
source is stated. (2 1 the classification is not changed, and (3) the informa- 
tion is safeguarded. Attention is invited to paragraph 10a, AR 3SO-5, which 
is quoted in part as follows: "A document * * * will be classified 
an( j * * * mar i c ,, ( j restricted when information contained therein is 
for official use only, or when its disclosure should be * * * denied 
the general public." 

4. Suggestions for future bulletins are invited. Any correspondence re- 
lating to Information Bulletins may be addressed directly to the Dis- 
semination Branch, Military Intelligence Service, War Department, Wash- 
ington, D. C. 



TABLE OF CONTENTS 

Page 

Section I. Intboduction 1 

II. Task Forces for Landing Operations 4 

1. General 4 

2. Task Forces 4 

a. Organization 4 

(1) Divisional Group 5 

(2) Brigade Group 5 

(3) Other Groups 5 

b. Ship Loads 7 

3. Landing Operations 7 

a. Preparations 7 

(1) Preliminary 7 

(2) Final 8 

b. The Landing Battle 10 

c. Action after Landing 12 

III. Ground Forces 14 

4. General 14 

5. Movement 14 

a. By Water Craft 15 

b. By Motor 15 

c. By Rail 16 

d. By Air 16 

e. By Bicycles 17 

■ 6. Tactics 17 

a. Offensive 17 

(1) Approach March 17 

(2) Infiltration 17 

(3) Attack 20 

(4) Infantry Platoon Tactics 21 

(5) Artillery 23 

(6) Engineers 24 

b. Armored Forces 24 

(1) General . 24 

(2) Organization 24 

(3) Tactics 25 

c. Bicycle Troops 27 

(1) General 27 

(2) Organization 27 

(3) Movement 27 

(4) Equipment 28 

in 



IV 



TABLE OF CONTENTS 



Section III. Ground Forces — Continued. 

6. Tactics— Continued. Pace 

d. Flying Columns 28 

(1) General.. _■ 28 

(2) Purpose 29 

(3) Composition 29 

e. Pursuit 30 

f. Antitank Defense 31 

(1) Antitank Rifles 32 

(2) Antitank Guns 32 

g. Defensive 32 

h. Deceptive Measures 32 

i. Fifth Column Activities 33 

VI. Air Forces 38 

7. General 38 

8. Attack Techniques 39 

a. Fighter Planes 39 

b. Bomber Planes 42 

(1) Horizontal Bombing 42 

(2) Torpedo Bombing 42 

(3) Dive Bombing 42 

(4) Heavy Bombers 42 

(5) Medium Bombers 43 

(6) Bomb Delivery 43 

(7) Use of Lights 44 

c. Destruction of Fallen Planes 44 

9. Pursuit 44 

10. Night Operations 45 

11. Deceptions 45 

12. Aircraft Dispersal 46 

a. General 46 

b. In the Philippines 46 

V. Parachute Forces 48 

13. General 48 

14. Organization 48 

15. Qualifications of Personnel 48 

16. Equipment 48 

17. Armament 50 

18. Palembang Operations 50 

VI. Communications 52 

19. Air-Ground 52 

20. Ground 52 

21. Equipment 53 

22. Radio Jamming 53 



TABLE OF CONTENTS V 

Section VI. Communications — Continued. Page 

23. Codes and Ciphers 54 

24. Radio Intelligence 54 

VII. Night Operations 55 

25. General 55 

26. Conduct of the Attack 55 

VIII. Camouflage 58 

27. General 58 

28. For 'Personnel 58 

29. For Machine Guns . 58 

30. For Artillery 58 

31. For Vehicles 59 

32. For Aircraft 59 

IX. Supply 60 

33. General 60 

34. Food 60 

35. Water 61 

36. Medicine 62 

37. Ammunition 62 

X. Equipment . _ 63 

38. Infantry 63 

a. Pistols . _ 63 

b. Machine Guns . 63 

(1) Light Type 63 

(2) Heavy Type 64 

c. Mortars _ . 65 

(1) 81-mm 66 

(2) 90-mm 66 

d. Grenades 66 

e. Grenade Discharges 68 

f. Antitank Bombs 68 

39. Artillery 68 

a. General 68 

b. New Field Piece _ 69 

c. 2Jfi-mm. Gun . _ 69 

d. 20-mm. Antiaircraft Gun.. - 70 

e. 75-mm. Antiaircraft Gun _ 70 

40. Armored Vehicles 71 

a. General 71 

b. Types 71 

(1) Tankette 71 

(2) Light Tank {Model 85) 71 

(3) Medium Tank {Cruiser Tank) 72 

(4) Flame-throwing Tank 72 



VI TABLE OF CONTEXTS 



Section X. Equipment— Continued. 

40. Armored Vehicles — Continued. 

b. Types — Continued. Page 

(5) Tank Trailer 73 

(6) Armored Cars _ _ 73 

41. Boats and Ships 73 

a. Special Transports 73 

b. Landing Craft 74 

(1) Type A 74 

(2) Type B 74 

(3) Type C 74 

(4) Type D 75 

(5) TypeE 75 

(6) TypeF 75 

c. Motor Torpedo Boats 75 

d. Tonnage Calculations 76 

(1) Personnel and Horses 76 

(2) Materiel ._. 76 

(3) Ship Dimensions in Relation to Ton- 

nage 76 

42. Air Force 77 

a. Aircraft 77 

(1) Bombers 77 

(2) Fighters 78 

(3) Floatplanes 78 

(4) Flying Boats 78 

b. Bombs 78 

c. Detachable Gasoline Tank 79 

d. Observation Balloons 80 

e. Barrage Balloons 80 

f. Two-way Radio 80 

(1) Receiver 80 

(2) Transmitter 81 

(3) Generator 81 

(4) Voice Transmission 81 

43. Mines 81 

44. Clothing 81 

a. General 81 

b. Uniform 82 

c. Headgear 82 

d. Footgear 82 

e. "Sennimbari" (1,000 Stitches) 83 

f. Individual Items 83 

g. Sniper's Equipment 83 



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 

Page 

Figure 1. Approach March of Japanese Infantry Company 19 

Figure 2. Usual Formation of Japanese Platoon for Enveloping 

Action 22 

Figure 3. Another Formation of Japanese Platoon for Enveloping 

Action 22 

Figure 4. Organization of Japanese Tank Regiment 26 

Figure 5. Organization of Japanese Parachute Battalion 49 



VII 



Section I. INTRODUCTION 



The success of the Japanese in the current Far East- 
ern conflict has been due primarily to thorough pre-war 
preparations, to experience gained in more than 4 years 
of war in China, to development of tactics peculiarly 
suited to the theaters of operations, to close coordina- 
tion of air, land, and sea forces into efficiently working 
combat teams, and to the proximity of J apanese armed 
forces to the scene of conflict. 

The pre-war preparations included the training of 
perhaps 3,000,000 men in the methods of modern war- 
fare, the development of new landing tactics and equip- 
ment well adapted for attack on the coveted areas, the 
perfection of jungle tactics, the collection of supplies 
and armament at strategic points, and the indoctrina- 
tion of almost fanatical morale among the Japanese 
armed forces. Furthermore, Japan spread propa- 
ganda undermining the influence of the white race 
throughout southern Asia and the southwest Pacific 
islands and developed a Fifth Column which has sur- 
passed all previous examples of this new phase of war- 
fare — all to aid her armed forces once ashore. 
* The Japanese used China as a proving ground for 
tactical theories in land, sea, and air operations which 
they have later used against the United Nations. Their 

l 



2 



JAPANESE WAKFARE 



staff officers were keen to anticipate the types of oppo- 
sition that would be encountered and the conditions 
under which their men would have to fight — and they 
planned accordingly. 

Because of close proximity to the theater of opera- 
tions, Japan has been able to mass quickly concentra- 
tions of overwhelming forces at critical points. And 
in order that full benefit could be derived from this 
initial advantage, armed forces were organized, 
equipped, and trained to function with high speed and 
mobility. 

Japanese training stresses the necessity for aggres- 
sive fighting spirit, for resourcefulness, and for initia- 
tive. The Japanese Army has always laid special 
emphasis on the fundamental fighting virtues of good 
physical condition, of ability to perform long marches 
and to cross difficult terrain, swimming where neces- 
sary, and of being able to fight with tenacity. Opera- 
tions show that the cooperation of all arms has also been 
stressed. This h indicated by the close liaison in battle 
between the supporting aircraft and front-line company 
commanders, who communicated with each other by ra- 
dio, and by the aid that the engineers, have rendered to 
the leading infantry and armored elements in the speedy 
repair of demolished bridges and the speedy removal 
of obstacles. These doctrines, combined with the ability 
to exploit readily usable captured materiel, have given 
the Japanese a battle technique well suited to the tropi- 
cal Far East theaters of war. Not merely imitators, 
as some have believed, the Japanese are quick to adapt 
foreign techniques to their own requirements. 



INTRODUCTION 



3 



The high standard of discipline obtained in the 
Japanese armed forces is due, at least in part, to the 
almost universal belief in Japan that the emperor is a 
direct descendant of a "heavenly" sun goddess and 
that no sacrifice is too great for the "Son of Heaven." 
The Japanese believe that no greater honor is possible 
for a warrior than death on the field of battle. 



Section II. TASK FORCES FOR 
LANDING OPERATIONS 



1. GENERAL 

Japanese landing operations show that considerable 
thought and training have been devoted to the coordi- 
nated employment of the army, the navy, and the air 
arm in amphibious warfare. Task forces composed of 
units from such fighting arms have specially devised 
tactics and highly developed landing equipment. The 
latter includes both landing-craft carriers which dis- 
gorge fully loaded boats from their sterns and sides, 
and landing craft specially designed to negotiate shallow 
and weed-infested waters. Bubber assault boats and 
special equipment to aid the individual soldier, such as 
rubber belts which can be inflated, have also been used. 

2. TASK FORCES 
a. Organization 

In recent operations the Japanese have used two 
types of joint task forces involving air, ground, and sea 
personnel and equipment — the divisional group and the 
brigade group. Their composition was as follows: 

4 



LANDING OPERATIONS 



5 



(1) Divisional group. — (a) From 70 to 92 shore- 
based aircraft consisting of 30 to 40 heavy bombers; 
24 to 36 fighters; 8 flying boats; and from 40 to 100 
carrier-borne planes ; 

(b) One division of troops (15,000) ; 

(c) One battalion of parachute troops (1,600) ; 

(d) From 32 to 46 vessels consisting of 2 aircraft 
carriers (each capable of carrying 40 to 60 planes) ; 6 
cruisers (each of which carried 3 reconnaissance 
planes) ; 2 to 4 submarines ; 10 to 14 destroyers ; and 12 
to 20 transports. 

(2) Brigade group. — (a) From 48 to 58 shore-based 
aircraft consisting of 20 to 30 heavy bombers; 12 to 
24 fighters ; 8 flying boats ; and 48 carrier-borne planes ; 

(b) 5,000 ground troops ; 

(c) From 19 to 25 vessels consisting of 1 aircraft 
carrier; 3 to 4 cruisers; 1 to 2 submarines; 6 to 8 
destroyers ; and 8 to 10 transports. 

(3) Other groups. — (a) Landings in China. — Prac- 
tically all Japanese landings in China were made with 
a force of two divisions (40,000 men or less). Equip- 
ment taken ashore included 3-ton tanks, 105-mm. field 
howitzers, and 75-mm. field guns. The Yuhung River 
landings by the Nakamura Detachment in 1939 which 
led to the capture of Nanning, China, involved only 
about 3,500 troops. 1 The force consisted of the follow- 
ing units : 

Headquarters 21st Infantry Brigade, 5th Division — 
(10 officers and enlisted men). 



1 This particular information was taken from captured Japanese orders. 
For detailed tactics employed in this landing operation, see Section I, Infor- 
mation Bulletin No. 12, M. I. S. 



6 JAPANESE WARFARE 

21st Infantry Regiment — 

(3 battalions, each with 4 rifle companies and 1 
machine-gun company — 2,716 officers and enlisted 
men). 

Brigade and Regimental Detachments- 
Infantry Gun — 

(75 officers and enlisted men). 

Signal — 

(60 officers and enlisted men) . 

One Battery of Field Artillery — 

(About 175 officers and enlisted men — 4 guns, 4 
sections, Hq. detail, combat train). 

One Battery of Mountain Artillery — 

(About 175 officers and enlisted men — 4 guns, 4 
sections, Hq. detail, combat train). 

One Engineer Company — 

(About 170 officers and enlisted men) — 4 
platoons) . 

One Mounted Platoon— 

(About 20 officers and enlisted men — 2 squads). 

Medical Troops— 

(About 60 officers and enlisted men) . 

(b) Naval landing parties. — These are trained to 
perform missions similar to the United States Marines. 
They engage in combat in cooperation with army units 
or act independently, and they are also used frequently 
to garrison enemy territory taken over by the navy. 

Usually a naval landing party is an improvised bat- 
talion which consists of 2,000 officers and enlisted men 
organized in 4 companies. Three of the companies 
have 6 rifle platoons and 1 machine-gun platoon in each, 
whereas the fourth company has 3 rifle platoons, 1 ma- 
chine-gun platoon, and an artillery unit of 4 guns. 
Additionally, a party sometimes has tanks and armored 
cars attached when serving in a garrison capacity. 



LANDING OPERATIONS 



7 



Naval landing parties are trained and equipped to 
undertake any type of land operation within the scope 
of their numerical strength. All naval personnel are 
trained concurrently in both land and naval warfare. 
The training begins when the individual enters the 
service and continues ashore and afloat, as opportunity 
offers. The individual's progress in both phases of 
combat is noted on his service record by his superiors, 
together with any special qualifications he may possess. 
The landing parties are selected from those having the 
best records. The navy, therefore, possesses at all 
times a large number of personnel qualified for landing 
and land operations. 

b. Ship Loads 

The allowance for transport by water is about 4 to 5 
tons per man. Normally two or three transports carry 
two-thirds of the troops, and the remaining smaller 
vessels carry the supplies and the remainder of the 
troops. 

3. LANDING OPERATIONS 
a. Preparations 

(1) Preliminary. — For a number of years Japanese 
officers and secret agents, disguised in many cases as 
fishermen, gathered pertinent military information in 
the areas which the Japanese attacked. The army 
even had meteorological experts assigned throughout 
the islands of the southwest Pacific and in Malaya, 
Burma, China, Thailand, and Indo-China until as late 

466701°— 42 2 



8 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



as September 1941. Many of these men, including 
professors in the science of meteorology, were em- 
ployed as laborers on rubber plantations and in rice 
fields and tin mines. They made particular studies on 
the beginning and the ending of the monsoon. 2 Their 
findings were based on rainfall, atmospheric pressure, 
temperature, and sun-spot observations. The army 
claims that the studies enable it to forecast when the 
monsoon will begin, how long it will last, and whether 
it will be normal, wet, or dry 

The timing and routing of J apanese military thrusts 
in recent months indicate careful study and full con- 
sideration of weather factors The staff of each field 
army includes commissioned meteorologists and en- 
listed assistants. 

In all their recent landing operations the Japanese 
have made air reconnaissance weeks ahead of the land- 
ings. Besides aircraft, secret agents and submarines 
have aided in making early reconnaissances. In each 
instance to date, the Japanese have selected landing 
sites within 400 miles of at least one Japanese air base. 

(2) Final. — Submarines usually make additional re- 
connaissance ahead of the task forces. Long-range 
planes — which may be flying boats — follow up with 
more reconnaissances and also light daylight attacks. 
Type 96 heavy bombers, usually unescorted by fight- 

2 A periodic wind in certain latitudes of southern Asia and the Indian 
Ocean. It blows from the southwest from the latter part of Aprir to 
the middle of October and from the northeast from about the middle of 
October to April. Generally, the southwest monsoon in India and the 
adjacent countries brings unusually heavy rainfall. 



LANDING OPERATIONS 



9 



ers, then make light attacks to damage runways, de- 
stroy airdrome installations, get data on the opposition 
and secure weather information. 

However, if the first group of reconnaissance planes 
detects concentrations of defending aircraft on air- 
dromes in the vicinity of the objective, a surprise raid 
in force is made to destroy the planes on the ground. 
Planes used in the raid include high-level-type bombers, 
dive bombers, and fighters. The dive bombers and 
fighters concentrate on planes dispersed within revet- 
ments near the field, since the revetments lend a con- 
siderable measure of protection from high-level bomb- 
ers unless direct hits are scored. The Japanese keep 
a close watch for replacements on the airdromes and 
maintain sustained attacks until defending planes have 
been destroyed or forced to leave. 3 

A final heavy bombing attack is made before dark- 
ness on the night the landings are attempted. Usually 
50 to 150 aircraft make the attack to destroy communi- 
cations, coast defense batteries, and antiaircraft in- 
stallations. The air attack sometimes is assisted by 
warships which shell the defense areas from positions 
offshore. The ships can achieve howitzer fire by high 
elevation of guns and use of a reduced charge. 

The approaching convoy is protected doubly on the 
day before landings are attempted. Direct air recon- 
naissance is given from all bases and carriers within 



3 In some cases, particularly in China, in order to achieve surprise, the 
Japanese made no preliminary reconnaissances or bombardments. 



10 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



range, and harassing attacks are made on opposition 
air bases from which attacks could be made on the 
convoy. If a suitable anchorage is available, troop 
ships, landing-boat carriers, and supply vessels stop 
for the night preceding the landing attack. If no 
anchorage is available, the vessels arrive off the desig- 
nated landing place between midnight and dawn. 

The Japanese do not consider rough weather or un- 
favorable beaches as obstacles ; in fact, such conditions 
sometimes are chosen deliberately and considerable 
loss of life by drowning is accepted in order to achieve 
surprise. The time for the landing operations usually 
is 2 or 3 hours before high tide, on moonless nights if 
possible. This rule is broken only for strategical or 
navigational reasons. 

If feasible, a few landing craft with engineers try 
to gain the shore secretly, before operations begin, to 
set up small lights — not visible from inshore — to guide 
the landing craft. In some instances, Fifth Columnists 
install the lights for the engineers. As a rule, at least 
part of the landing boats reach the beach before day- 
light. From 5 to 16 miles of shoreline are utilized for 
the landings. 

b. The Landing Battle 

Warships — which include cruisers and destroyers 
and sometimes aircraft carriers — form a protective 
screen around the troop transports during landing op- 
erations. Their guns are set to fire either at opposing 
aircraft or onshore batteries. Meanwhile transports 
carrying the advance assault troops go as near the 



LANDING OPERATIONS 



11 



shore as feasible before the troops disembark in small 
motor-propelled landing boats. 4 

A heavy machine gun and a light machine gun 5 are 
set up near the bow of each boat for the landing at- 
tack, and each man, not otherwise engaged, has a rifle 
or a light automatic weapon to fire. Patrol boats 
armed with pompoms and machine guns give close 
support to the landings. Air support is available if 
needed. If used, it is under radio control of the land- 
ing units. The bulk of the air task force is held in 
reserve to counterattack opposition bases within effec- 
tive range. 

When very near the shore the Japanese, all 
equipped with life jackets, plunge into the water re- 
gardless of its depth, since the waves will carry them 
to the shallow water. If at all possible, the Japanese 
try to land with the initial force some light artillery, 
usually mountain-type (75's), and light tanks. Trans- 
ports with the main body of troops remain some dis- 
tance from the shore until the beach has been secured. 
Then the remainder of the troops are disembarked. 
The landings are directed either against fixed objec- 
tives or into localities which will permit flanking 
movements. Earliest landing parties use radio to 
direct air support. 

* See paragraphs 41a and b, pages 73-75, for detailed descriptions of 
Japanese landing boats. 

6 In one attempt to land on the east coast of Bataan, the Japanese 
mounted 75-mm. Runs and smaller weapons on barges. Effective artillery 
fire from United States and Filipino troops sank several of the barges and 
forced others to withdraw. Japanese losses were heavy. 



12 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



c. Action after Landing 

Once having established a beachhead, the Japanese 
push inland rapidly, carrying out thorough air and 
ground reconnaissance ahead of their advance units. 
Automobiles, bicycles, gasoline, and other supplies are 
confiscated quickly, and small groups, making the 
fullest possible use of darkness, penetrate the lines of 
the opposition to harass defended positions from the 
rear, cut communications, and attempt to force with- 
drawals. 

If unopposed at the beaches, the Japanese hold to 
the roads, as a rule, until making contact with the op- 
position. They also use rivers and creeks to pene- 
trate inland by boat and to turn flanks. They have 
special craft for such operations, including pontons 
propelled by outboard motors and boats driven by 
airplane-type motors with propellers rigged above 
the surface of the water. Smoke screens are used 
freely to facilitate inland movements. To avoid being 
fired on by their own planes, Japanese patrols and 
smaller units out in front are required to identify 
themselves during daylight with Rising Sun flags dis- 
played toward the sky. 

Meanwhile, immediately upon landing, parachute 
troops or special units of ground forces try to seize 
airdromes from which fighter planes may operate 
(protection of ground troops the first day usually is 
provided by seaplanes or carrier-based aircraft). 
Fighter squadrons are formed quickly, and from one 
or more seized airdromes, or from carriers, type O 



LANDING OPERATIONS 



13 



navy fighters come to the support of troops as quickly 
as possible. 

Native labor is put to work repairing and resurfac- 
ing airdromes and extending them for use by heavy 
bombers within 2 to 7 days. Within 14 days, prefab- 
ricated shelters are put up, interceptor units are in- 
stalled, and an aircraft warning service is spread over a 
60- to 100-mile area. There also is evidence of search- 
light installations being correlated with effective 
sound detectors. Supplies are accumulated and at in- 
termediate points service and maintenance units for 
aircraft are set up — all within a period of 2 to 3 
weeks. 

The Japanese are great believers in thorough re- 
connaissance — a fact definitely established by transla- 
tion of the captured orders dealing with the landing 
operations which led to the capture of Nanning. 
They seek information about the opposition by use 
of air reconnaissance and scouts ; by questioning pris- 
oners (especially high-ranking officers) ; by scrutiniz- 
ing local newspapers, annuals, and other literature 
in occupied towns, and captured documents; and by 
careful estimation. The information obtained is sent 
immediately, by radio if practicable, to unit head- 
quarters. 



Section III. GROUND FORCES 



4. GENERAL 

Basically, tactics of the Japanese are no different 
from those employed by other modern armies. In 
jungle warfare, however, their tactics have been char- 
acterized by speed, deception, and the use of modern 
automatic weapons. In instances when numbers would 
gain a quick decision, Japanese commanders have not 
hesitated to commit sufficient force to overwhelm the 
opposition even though at great cost in J apanese lives. 

Thorough reconnaissance usually precedes all opera- 
tions. Means of communication, particularly radio, 
are employed even to the lowest units. Camouflage is 
stressed to include measures taken by the individual 
soldier. Ruses and feints are extensively employed. 
The Japanese have quickly discovered that in many 
instances bluff is far more economical than force. 

Lightly dressed and equipped, the Japanese soldier 
possesses great mobility; generally he is independent 
of supply lines, and is taught to live off the land. 

5. MOVEMENT 

The Japanese employ all available means of trans- 
portation to move troops speedily along highways and 

14 



GROUND FORCES 



15 



railways, and through jungles and water areas, never 
failing to utilize civilian, army, and naval conveyances 
as they are captured. . The speed of their movements 
has been facilitated by light equipment, simple rations, 
and a minimum amount of clothing, weapons, and am- 
munition, plus, in many cases, the aid of Fifth Column 
guides. 

a. By Water Craft 

The Japanese look on water as a highway, not as an 
obstacle. In both Malaya and Burma, the Japanese 
employed small specially-designed river boats and 
small confiscated civilian boats to infiltrate patrols to 
the flanks and rear of defending forces. The patrols, 
sometimes composed of large numbers of troops, gen- 
erally moved at night. When they moved in daylight, 
air protection was afforded them. Such movements 
were possible very often because of the large number of 
rivers and inlets in Malaya, particularly along the west 
coast. A succession of infiltrations by boats down the 
west coast aided greatly in forcing several British 
withdrawals. The boats usually hid in numerous well- 
covered inlets by day and traveled close to the coast 
line at night until reaching their destination. In some 
cases the Japanese used rafts made of bamboo poles. 

b. By Motor 

Most of the trucks used by the Japanese to date have 
been light because of the soggy or rough terrain en- 
countered in nearly all theaters of operation. The 



16 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



trucks have been employed mainly to transport troops 
and supplies. They usually have been bunched while 
moving and at a halt, and lights have been used rather 
freely. Both bunching and lighting afforded excellent 
targets for the opposition. 

c. By Rail 

Large quantities of heavy Japanese supplies and 
some troops were moved by rail from Indo-China and 
Thailand into northern Malaya. To facilitate repair 
of railroads and bridges, apparently large stocks of 
railroad materiel were accumulated in Indo-China be- 
fore the invasion of Malaya. Japanese engineers ap- 
pear capable of making quick temporary repairs to 
damaged railroad and highway bridges. 

d. By Air 

The Japanese have used air transports for both per- 
sonnel and supplies, but the extent of such activities is 
not known. They used 100 transports in a parachute 
attack on Palembang, Sumatra, and, according to re- 
ports, 1,500 troops were transported by air, apparently 
from Bangkok, possibly from Hanoi, to the vicinity of 
Chieng-mai in Thailand. It is believed that the enemy 
uses transport aircraft for aviation supplies, although 
no detailed intelligence has been received to this effect. 
It is definitely known that air-borne troops have been 
trained and that the Japanese began a study of the 
possibilities of air transport some time before war 
began. 



GROUND FORCES 



17 



e. By Bicycles 

The Japanese utilized a large number of locally ob- 
tained bicycles in Malaya to move troops and light 
equipment to the front. Usually the riders traveled 
along the road in single file. Mortars, mortar ammuni- 
tion, and small arms ammunition were carried on an 
iron-wheeled vehicle which was attached by a chain to 
a tandem bicycle propelled by three men. 

6. TACTICS 
a. Offensive 

(1) Approach march. — The Japanese company uses 
roads as far as possible until contact with the enemy is 
made. One squad 1 of each platoon usually travels 
along the sides of the road and the other squads travel 
under any available cover on each flank. The leading 
element of the company consists of 6 scouts, who range 
about 350 yards ahead of No. 2 platoon (fig. 1). Back 
of this platoon by 200 to 350 yards is company head- 
quarters, followed closely by No. 3 platoon and then 
No. 1 platoon. When the squad uses scouts to locate 
hostile positions, the scouts return to the squad before 
the attack. 

(2) Infiltration. — Once having made contact with 
the opposition, the Japanese avoid frontal attacks in 
force and send patrols around the flanks and to the 
rear of their opposition. These patrols usually are 



ir The Japanese infantry squad (called a buntai by the Japanese) con- 
sists of 10 to 13 men as compared to 12 in the United States infantry. 



18 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



small, consisting of from two to a few dozen men. 
They are dressed lightly but are armed with light 
machine guns. Each man carries enough concentrated 
food to keep him going for several days. These men 
apparently have been trained thoroughly, hardened 
for jungle warfare, and given wide discretion as to 
tactics. They are expert swimmers and boatmen and 
are otherwise qualified to overcome the difficulties of 
jungle warfare. They have been instructed to look 
upon woods and water as means, not obstacles. In the 
initial stages of the infiltration attacks, small patrols 
creep noiselessly around the flanks or between defense 
points to surround the opposition. Usually they re- 
main quiet until their comrades in front of the de- 
fenders feint a heavy frontal attack. Then the infil- 
tration patrols open automatic fire to give opposing 
forces the impression that they have been surrounded. 
The patrols keep moving about while firing and even 
when fired on. The volume of fire produced by an un- 
usually large number of automatic weapons in the 
hands of the patrols and front-line troops indicates 
stronger forces than those actually engaged. Some- 
times the Japanese have set off firecrackers and have 
made other noises to imitate fire. Sometimes great 
batches of firecrackers are dropped from planes, with 
a lighted fuze to ignite them after they fall. 

The Japanese seek by these tactics to confuse the 
defenders ; to force quick withdrawals with the hopes 
of capturing large quantities of weapons, transport, 
supplies, and men ; and to destroy commaud posts. To 



GROUND FORCES 



19 



aid in accomplishing these aims, some of the patrols 
are assigned specifically to block roads to the rear. 



about 350 yards 




about 200 to 350 yards 




Figure 1. Approach march of Japanese infantry company. 

During the Malayan campaign, such infiltration 
tactics were a constant menace to British artillery, 
particularly columns on roads. Japanese parties in- 
filtrated between the elements of the columns and pre- 
vented them from advancing or retreating. Artillery 



20 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



communication wire in forward zones was cut by the 
Japanese or native partisans almost as soon as it was 
laid. After cutting the wire, the enemy troops often 
hid nearby and fired on the line guards when they 
approached. 

In their infiltration tactics, the Japanese move rap- 
idly at times, and very slowly and patiently on other 
occasions. They have stood in ditches in rice fields for 
hours, up to ther necks in water, waiting for targets to 
appear ; they have lain concealed in underbrush for long 
periods waiting for chances to advance without being 
observed. 

In cases of counterattacks, the Japanese permit the 
opposing forces to pass through, then turn and fire on 
the flanks and rear of the counterattacking troops. 

In both Malaya and the Philippines, some of the 
infiltrating Japanese, excellently camouflaged, climed 
trees, and acted as snipers. They tied themselves to the 
trees with ropes. Light machine guns carried by the 
snipers appeared to be fitted with spikes or similar 
means of rapidly attaching the weapons to trees. The 
snipers sought particularly to pick off occupants of 
Bren gun carriers and officers. Occasionally the 
snipers threw hand grenades into passing trucks and 
carriers. Trees were used also as observation posts, 
and on occasions whole parties thus concealed them- 
selves in clumps of woods and dense jungle growth for 
several days at a time. 

(3) Attack. — The Japanese usually begin large- 
scale attacks at dawn, with the infantry -very closely 
supported by aircraft and artillery. 



GROUND FORCES 



21 



Their basic principle of attack is to dispose a small 
force against organized localities and then envelop 
the flanks and attack the rear. This method has been 
particularly effective against troops who have been 
established in an organized position with supplies 
of food and ammunition at a distance to the rear. 
The Japanese attack against the flanks and rear of 
such a position has forced units to withdraw and, 
occasionally, to fight their way back to regain con- 
nection with their ammunition and food supplies. 
Great speed has characterized the development of 
such flanking movements which have at times struck 
4 or 5 miles in rear of the front line. 

(4) Infantry platoon 2 tactics. — Squads 1 and 2 of 
the platoon make frontal assaults while Squad 3 attacks 
either the opposition's right or left flank (fig. 2). Be- 
cause of the danger of hitting friendly troops and also 
of weakening squad strength, the squad rarely ever is 
divided to attack both flanks at the same time. Squad 
4 usually operates fairly close to the front line, in a 
reserve fire-power position about midway between 
Squads 1 and 2. The light machine guns of the first 
three squads generally are used in the front lines — 
rarely ever as reserve fire power. 

The following modification (fig. 3) of the formation 
shown in figure 2 is sometimes used. 

2 Squads 1, 2, and 3 are armed with rifles and bayonets and one light 
machine gun each. Squad 4 has three grenade dischargers. Hand gre- 
nades are usually carried by all personnel in these squads. Officers and 
sergeants are armed with swords and pistols. Japanese mauuals stress 
the demoralizing effect of hand-to-lrtmd fighting. 



22 



JAPANESE WARFARE 




- I I I (Grenada dischargers; 

reserve lire power) 

Figure 2. Usual formation of Japanese platoon for enveloping action. 




Sqd k 

Figure 3. Another formation of Japanese platoon for enveloping action. 



GROUND FORCES 



23 



The light machine guns of Squads 1 and 3 support 
Squad 2 and pin the enemy down with light machine- 
gun fire. The three grenade dischargers in Squad 4 
assist the fixing action with a barrage. The two flank 
squads (1 and 3) envelop. The envelopment may be of 
both flanks or of only dne flank, in which case the squad 
not making the envelopment assists Squad 2. 

The following quotation from a report indicates 
a typical Japanese action: 

In one instance the Japanese pushed forward in approach 
formation. On encountering our outposts, they deployed, and 
at once began to find holes through which they filtered without 
hesitation, and, after penetrating the outpost line, went around 
our main body, later firing on it from the rear. The hostile 
main body apparently lost contact with the connecting files, for 
they marched directly into a machine gun, which they probably 
knew of, but thought had been put out of action. 

(5) Artillery. — The Japanese have employed rela- 
tively little artillery, because of the jungle nature of 
most of the terrain over which they have fought. 
They used heavy artillery frequently in the Philip- 
pines, principally 240-mm. railway or siege guns, on 
the United States forts at the entrance of Manlia 
Bay. Upon reaching open country in Johore State, 
opposite Singapore Island in Malaya, the Japanese 
began utilizing considerable artillery, a large part 
of which had been captured. In other than these in- 
stances, they have employed small pieces suitable for 
quick movement through the jungles with infantry. 
The denseness of jungle growth made use of high tra- 
jectory weapons the logical means of obtaining heavy 

466701° — 42— — 3 



24 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



weapon concentration. Under these conditions, they 
resorted to 81-mm. mortars and occasionally heavy- 
machine guns as substitutes for artillery. Whenever 
they did use artillery in the jungles, the Japanese 
made extensive reconnaissance to find the best gun 
positions available. They put down portable ramps 
to bridge ditches and soft ground and built gun plat- 
forms where it was necessary to fire from soft ground. 

(6) Engineers. — Japanese engineers have shown 
considerable ability and ingenuity in bridging streams 
and repairing damaged bridges. They have utilized 
local material whenever possible. It has been re- 
ported that in some instances soldiers standing in 
streams have been used as bridge supports. 

b. Armored Forces 

(1) General. — So far, the Japanese have used ar- 
mored forces against the United Nations in small num- 
bers compared with the total number of troops engaged. 
Jungle growths and restricted terrain have no doubt 
been the reason, rather than lack of equipment. 

Although the exact strength of the Japanese armored 
units is not known, reports indicate that a year ago 
there were four tank regiments and a large number of 
smaller units. Light, medium, and heavy tanks as well 
as one- and two-man tankettes are in use. 

(2) Organization. — Light tanks are an integral part 
of streamlined divisions. Medium tanks are in non- 
divisional organizations as are the heavy tanks. 8 Tank 



'Accurate details are not yet available on the organization of heavy 
tanks. 



GROUND FORCES 



25 



units are knit together not only by systematic organi- 
zation but also by providing two-way radios to all tank 
commanders down to and including platoon leaders. 

(a) Divisional. — Most of Japan's "streamlined" di- 
visions have an organic light tank company. The com- 
pany consists of a headquarters, a rear echelon, and 
four platoons of three tanks each. Three additional 
tanks comprise the headquarters and rear echelon. In 
addition, the rear echelon is believed to have half- 
track vehicles, motorcycles, and tracked trailers. The 
trailers are utilized to transport ammunition, rations, 
and fuel to the battle area. The divisional companies 
have included only light tanks and tankettes (called 
armored vehicles by the Japanese). 

(b) Nondivisional. — The Japanese tank regiment, 
which is nondivisional, is made up of 52 light and 95 
medium tanks, a total of 147. Each unit down to and 
including the company has, in the rear echelon, a serv- 
ice detachment which supplies ammunition, fuel, and 
limited maintenance. The rear echelons also probably 
include light armored and half-track maintenance and 
supply vehicles. Each medium tank carries four men, 
a commander, a machine-gunner, a cannon-gunner, and 
a driver. Organizational details of the tank reghnent 
are shown in the diagram on page 26. 

(3) Tactics. — The Japanese have employed small 
groups of tanks — from three to five — in direct frontal 
attacks to assist the forward advance of the infantry. 
The tanks have been withdrawn when the infantry 
has reached its objective. All these tanks are a light 
type except the leader, which is a medium. In Ma- 



26 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



laya, sometimes these groups were composed in whole 
or in part of armored carrier vehicles with one medium 
tank used as the leading element. Clearing enemy 




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troops and obstacles off roads and creating confusion 
among the defending troops were the usual missions 
assigned to these tank groups. The groups sometimes 



GROUND FORCES 



27 



attacked in an many as four waves. The leading wave 
sought, without stopping, to engage vehicles and per- 
sonnel on or near the road, while the rear groups 
halted on the road and opened fire when opposition 
was encountered. However, none of the groups pur- 
sued the attacks a great distance from the road. Their 
fire usually was inaccurate, and casualties were light. 
After brief engagements the groups would move by 
roads deeper into opposition territory and engage 
other troops in a similar manner, particularly direct- 
ing their efforts at troops in the rear, at artillery, at 
command posts, and at supply installations. 

c. Bicycle Troops 

(1) General. — Bicycle troops are organized sepa- 
rately from the infantry. To date Japan has em- 
ployed only a comparatively small number of cyclist 
troops. Most of these were used in Malaya. Indica- 
tions are that all bicycles utilized were confiscated 
from the natives and used only in movements behind 
the front lines. 

(2) Organization. — The bicycle troops usually were 
observed in groups of 60 to 70. 

(3) Movement. — No definite formation was kept in 
movement, but two or three were abreast and separated 
a few yards from the man in front. The cyclists 
traveled 8 to 10 miles an hour in daytime but appeared 
to be in more of a hurry at night. They also made 
more noise at night — as if they were somewhat nerv- 
ous. About 1 in 10 carried a flashlight; about half of 
the flashlights were tied on the bicycles. The move- 



28 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



ment of bicycle troops was not coordinated with motor 
transport except possibly with motorcycles. The lat- 
ter were seen going in the same direction as the bicy- 
cles in nearly every case but at speeds of about 30 miles 
an hour. No one stood out among the cyclists as a 
leader, either by dress, position, or behavior, and it is 
believed that their officers rode on motorcycle combi- 
nations. No scouts were observed and security pre- 
cautions appeared lax. 

(4) Equipment. — East cyclist carried what ap- 
peared to be a rifle. The rifles — some of which were 
shaped as if they were automatic — usually were trans- 
ported with the barrels forward below the horizontal 
bar of the bicycle frame. More than half of them were 
carried in khaki covers. No rifles were observed slung 
on the cyclists' backs and in no case was a rifle de- 
tached from a bicycle when the soldiers stopped for 
rest or to enter a house. No pistols, knives, subma- 
chine guns, or items resembling ammunition were ob- 
served. The average load on the bicycle, apart from 
the soldier, appeared to be 75 to 100 pounds. The load 
included packs, which invariably hung on either side 
of the rear carrier; a box or bag of some type on the 
carrier; a rolled, hoodless rain cape; and other equip- 
ment, including spare clothes. 

d. Flying Columns 

(1) General. — Fast, hard-hitting combat teams 
known as flying columns have been employed by the 
Japanese in China. They included tanks, armored 



GROUND FORCES 



29 



cars, motorized infantry, cavalry, engineers, and signal 
and medical personnel. 

(2) Purpose. — The flying columns were designed 
primarily to make quick, effective surprise attacks 
on opposition forces of varying size. They made in- 
filtrations, reconnaissances, and flanking and turning 
movements; they disrupted communications; harassed 
large formations; acted as the advance guard for the 
main hody; and assisted the main body in difficult 
situations. 

(3) Composition. — Although the strength of the fly- 
ing columns varied according to the tasks performed, 
they generally were composed as follows: 

(a) 1 section of armored cars — 

1 lieutenant in command. 

25 enlisted men (approximately), including 1 sergeant 

as car commander and 1 corporal. 
4 light armored cars, each carrying 2 light machine guns. 
4 trailers. 

1 motorcycle, with attached sidecar. 

(b) 1 section of tanks (light or medium) * — 

1 lieutenant in command. 

30 enlisted men (approximately). 

3 tanks. 

1 motorcycle, with attached sidecar. 

(c) 1 squadron of cavalry (4 troops) — 

Officers (number unknown but believed to be 5). 

165 enlisted men, including 2 sergeant majors, 1 noncom- 
missioned gas officer, 1 noncommissioned veterinary 
officer, 1 noncommissioned supply officer, 2 buglers, and 
1 medical orderly. 

155 horses (approximately). 

4 light machine guns. 



'Flying columns do not necessarily have tanks attached. 



30 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



(d) 1 company of infantry (3 platoons, with 1 platoon or more 

of heavy machine guns attached) — 
5 officers. 
189 enlisted men. 
12 light machine guns. 
129 rifles. 
159 bayonets. 
18 short rifles. 

Grenade dischargers (number unknown). 

(e) 1 car section — 

1 lieutenant in command. 
15 drivers. 

15 assistant drivers. 

2 light machine-gunners. 
1 mortar-gunner. 

1 ammunition carrier. 
15 cars. 

1 machine gun. 
1 mortar. 

(f ) 1 section of engineers, including 5 NCO's. 
e. Pursuit 

With aircraft lending effective aid, the Japanese 
have carried out vigorous pursuits of United Nations' 
forces. Reconnaissance planes located and photo- 
graphed oil, food, and ammunition dumps and storage 
points in order that pursuit troops could later locate 
and confiscate the supplies. 

The J apanese have been helped greatly in this phase 
of warfare by utilizing captured guns and supplies. 
Officers and ordnance personnel, schooled in the me- 
chanics of various opposition equipment, particularly 
artillery, have been able to repair and operate this 
equipment immediately. Although the drivers of 
United Nations' vehicles in most cases removed the 



GROUND FORCES 



31 



distributors from motor vehicles before abandoning 
them, the Japanese often had usable spare distribu- 
tors, obtained from similar disabled vehicles. 

The Japanese, contrary to the usual tactics in the 
past, always displace usable captured armament and 
supplies to the front — not to the rear. For instance, 
captured field guns are trucked or towed forward with 
the pursuit until dumps of appropriate ammunition 
are reached, and then they are put into action. In- 
stances have been related by field artillery officers 
where the Japanese used pieces from which the breech 
blocks had been removed. They undoubtedly found 
the blocks or used similar blocks taken from the same 
type of gun. Japanese infantiymen often discarded 
their own rifles in the pursuit, after using all their 
ammunition, and armed themselves with opposition 
rifles. The same was true in the case of machine guns. 

Pursuit parties moved so fast in Malaya that at 
times they were able to cut both civilian and military 
communications and arrive in cities and towns before 
civil authorities knew of their proximity or had time 
to remove or destroy vital stores of supplies. Often 
Japanese tanks and trucks appeared at filling stations 
for fuel and water. These successes spared the Japa- 
nese considerable effort in obtaining supplies from the 
rear. 

f. Antitank Defense 

Little information has been received on antitank 
defense. 



32 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



(1) Antitank rifles. — So far there has been no men- 
tion of the use of antitank rifles. In the few limited 
operations in which the Japanese have been forced to 
protect themselves against tanks, defended road blocks 
have been established. 

(2) Antitank guns. — The use of a 80-caliber dual- 
purpose antitank gun has been reported. 

g. Defensive 

Although Japanese soldiers have been taught that 
retreats are " inglorious," their training regulations 
indicate defensive tactics similar to those used by the 
United Nations. Positions are occupied in consider- 
able depth. They consist of a number of defensive 
areas, each capable of all-around defense. Dummy 
positions are interspersed. 

h. Deceptive Measures 

Perhaps in no other military campaign in history 
has so much deception been used as in the current 
Japanese campaign. Deceptive measures employed 
by the Japanese to date include the following: 

(1) Taking advantage of the difficulty in distin- 
guishing the Japanese from Malayans or resident 
Chinese by frequently dressing as civilians and hiding 
their guns until they could spring a surprise attack; 

(2) Dressing in British and Dutch uniforms and 
steel helmets ; 

(3) Putting captured Indian soldiers as a screen 
between themselves and attacking Indian troops with 
orders to urge the Indian troops to hold their fire ; 



GROUND FORCES 



33 



(4) Hiring civilians to drive private cars to bridges 
prepared for demolition so that the Japanese hidden 
in the car could shoot the covering party ; 

(5) Making noises imitating frontal fire to attract 
the opposition while lightly armed Japanese troops 
worked around the flanks ; 

(6) Employing intelligence personnel with advance 
guards to confuse British native troops by speaking 
out in Malay, Tamil, Hindustani, Gurkhali, English, 
or Dutch — depending on the circumstances ; 

(7) Exploding firecrackers in the rear of defending 
troops to give them the impression that they were 
being attacked heavily ; 

(8) Rapping bamboo sticks on hard objects to imi- 
tate machine-gun fire ; 

(9) Exposing soldiers in a swimming pool and at a 
nearby bar in Borneo to draw the fire of Dutch ma- 
chine guns so that their positions could be determined ; 

(10) Calling out in Dutch for the whereabouts of the 
Dutch commander during a night attack and shooting 
the commander when he answered. 

i. Fifth Column Activities 

Japan laid the groundwork for Asiatic conquests 
with years of intense propaganda in China, Indo- 
china, Thailand, British Malaya, Burma, India, the 
Netherlands East Indies, and other southwest Pacific 
islands in British, American, and Dutch possessions. 
Rivaling Germany's far-flung propaganda activities, 
Japan was estimated to have had over 200,000 paid 
and schooled professional agitators at work in the 



34 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



above-named areas prior to the Japanese attack on the 
United. Nations. 

Until September 1941, the propaganda had been 
aimed mostly along cultural, educational, and political 
lines. Since then propaganda has been accelerated to 
arouse the natives against their governments so as to 
obtain their support for forthcoming military opera- 
tions. 

When Japanese troops first entered Malaya, in order 
to win over local support, they distributed Singapore 
money (printed in Japan) among a large number of 
natives. The same device (guilders, printed in Japan) 
was used in Borneo and other islands of the Nether- 
lands East Indies. In addition, natives were told that 
the homes of the British and Dutch were theirs, and 
they were invited to move in and take them over or else 
to loot them of furniture and other valuables that the 
Japanese themselves did not want. 

Reports of various Japanese fifth column activities 
since the war started disclose the following methods: 

(1) Use of red-clothed scarecrows and arms pointing 
to defenses. 

(2) Indication of the direction of targets by tram- 
pling or cutting arrows in rice fields. 

(3) Pointing of banana leaves, washings, or planks 
to indicate motor transport parks or command posts. 

(4) Dressing of civilians in occupied territory as 
British and Indian soldiers and their calling out to the 
British not to shoot. 

(5) Furnishing of local food supplies. 



GROUND FORCES 



35 



(6) Use of fishing boats and lights to aid in landing 
operations. 

(7) Indication of airdromes with strips of cloth or 
paint and by flashing lights. 

(8) Acting as expert guides for Japanese troops. 

(9) Supplying of information gathered before the 
war by local Japanese residents. 

(10) Rendering of assistance as native officials. 

(11) Natives in Burma cloaked themselves as priests 
or monks for the specific purpose of doing fifth column 
work — this was accomplished easily because of the loose 
requirements necessary to join the priesthood order of 
poongees. 5 

(12) Procuring of bancas and other small boats for 
Japanese infiltration parties which slipped down the 
west coast of Malaya. 

(13) Tampering with air-raid warning systems to 
render them unworkable. 

(14) Spreading of rumors among native troops. 

(15) Maintaining a radio transmitter in Singapore 
throughout the Malayan campaign. 

(16) Drawing up of airdrome plans to turn over to 
the Japanese — a Malay overseer at Alor Star airdrome, 
Malaya, was arrested with airdrome plans, signaling 
apparatus, and Japanese propaganda. 

(17) Two coolies walking together, one wearing a red 
shirt and the other a white, indicated the proximity of 
opposing troops. 

(18) Drink vendors on bicycles signaled to the Jap- 



5 Also spelled pootighics or poonghees. 



36 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



anese with a flag, waving it twice and pointing to Brit- 
ish troops after they had served the British free drinks. 

(19) A German dressed in civilian clothes preceded 
Japanese patrols by 50 yards and engaged opposing 
troops in conversation while the patrols took up firing 
positions. 

(20) Telephone operators acting as chief fifth col- 
umnists in the Kedah, Malaya, area. 

(21) Use of rice, salt, and white paper on roads to 
denote proximity of troops. 

(22) Aiding in the organiation of the "Free Bur- 
mese Army." 

(23) Members of Thakins antiforeign political 
party in Burma organized to resist the British by 
fifth column activities and to join the "Free Burmese 
Army." 

(24) German missionaries in New Guinea turned 
out to be fifth columnists — they helped the Japanese 
through the jungles to contact Australian forces. 

(25) Obtaining information direct from United Na- 
tions ' airfields — possibly by transmissions from nearby 
undetachable short-wave radio sets 6 to adjacent field 
transmitters and then to Japanese air headquarters. 

(26) Dropping propaganda pamphlets from the air, 
and having Fifth Columnists distribute them even 
more widely during blackouts. 

"These sets were believed to be small, portable transmitters of such 
low power that they were not detectable at the United Nations' air- 
fields but of sufficient strength to be received by nearby field receivers. 
Messages received from the small sets were then relayed by more power- 
ful field transmitters to Japanese Air Headquarters. 



GROUND FORCES 



37 



(27) Signalling to Japanese aviators by placing 
lights in hollow stumps where they could not be seen 
from the ground. 

(28) Placing "puncture traps" on Burma roads to 
damage or delay United Nations' motor transports. 
The traps consisted of several sharp steel spikes, cut 
out of one-fourth-inch flat steel sheeting. The spikes 
were 6 inches long, with the upper 3 inches protrud- 
ing from the road bed and camouflaged with mud, 
straw, or dried leaves. 



Section IV. AIR FORCES 



7. GENERAL 

In their campaigns to date, the Japanese have used 
bombers, fighters, and reconnaissance planes to assist 
the forward elements and to "soften" opposition. 
Targets for their aircraft include troops and installa- 
tions in the lines of communication and exposed ele- 
ments of the combatant forces such as roadbound 
congested transport columns, and command posts. 

The Japanese air force not only protects the Japa- 
nese land forces, their bases ; their lines of communica- 
tion, and their concentrations, but in every operation 
it also gives prompt, close, and sustained support and 
cooperation to the ground forces. 

The task force commanders have full control over 
all their weapons, and the necessary aircraft for the 
task are just additional weapons for the commander 
to employ. The commander is presumed to know the 
proper use of his air weapons even as he knows the 
use of his infantry or artillery. The Japanese regard 
the plane as an indispensable weapon with which to 
assist military operations. It might be said that they 
look on it as an airmobile battery, or, in its reconnais- 
sance uses, as a pair of flying, long-range binoculars. 

38 



AIR FORCES 



39 



Before committing his forces to battle, the Japanese 
army commander has large air formations assigned 
to him and placed under his direct command (men, 
officers, and planes). He, in turn, often delegates 
command to smaller air units down to regimental com- 
manders. 

When not rendering close support to the ground 
forces, Japanese air units perform independent mis- 
sions. 

A Japanese manual says: "It is not cooperation we 
should seek — it is coordination we must make certain." 

8. ATTACK TECHNIQUES 
a. Fighter Planes 

Practically all Japanese fighter planes have been 
equipped with an extra, detachable gasoline tank which 
enables them to fly long distances. The tank may be 
dropped during combat to lighten the plane load. 

Besides strafing the airdromes of the opposition, the 
Japanese consistently and thoroughly ground-strafe 
the perimeter of airdromes to a depth of 30 to 50 yards 
inside any surrounding trees and generally with in- 
cendiary bullets. This ground-strafing is never done 
without thorough reconnaissance and careful planning. 
Runways are avoided so that they can be used later. 

Japanese fighter squadrons, upon entering combat, 
frequently divide into two sections, one section flying 
low to tempt the opposing planes to dive and the other 
remaining high to dive on the opposition aircraft. 

Diving out of clouds in the initial attack on the 

466701° —42 4 



40 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



Philippines, Japanese fighters made a stern attack on 
the United States bombers and pulled out with a steep 
climbing turn, which offered the planes as good targets. 

At Kota Bharu, four type fighters, approaching in 
echelon formation at about 2,000 feet, peeled off into 
a steep dive to make an organized front-gun attack. 
The guns were fired from 1,500 feet and continued until 
the planes pulled out at low altitude. After the initial 
dive each plane appeared to act independently. 

In another attack by 15 to 20 naval type 96 Mitsu- 
bishi seascouting fighters, some of the planes peeled off 
into a maneuver resembling a spin or aileron turn. 
They straightened out into a 70° dive with a very 
sharp pull out at about 1,000 feet. They dived a second 
time in a similar manner after gaining sufficient height. 

In the Philippines, three Japanese fighters used 
the following tactics on dispersed ground planes: 

The fighters appeared from directly out of the sun 
at an altitude of not more than 300 feet. They opened 
fire immediately, dropping their noses a little and 
coming as low as 100 feet over the targets. After this 
first pass, the formation broke up and each plane 
selected a target and stayed with it, either circling 
after each run to come out of the sun or crisscrossing 
over the target. The attack lasted about 10 minutes. 

The following tactics were used by nine Japanese 
fighters against a formation of nine United States 
B-17E bombers: 

Three of the Japanese fighters got on line in front 
of the bomber formation and made direct individual 
frontal attacks on the flight leader's ship while the 



AIR FORCES 



41 



remaining six attacked the rear ships of the forma- 
tion. Throughout the attack, which lasted about 20 
minutes, these tactics were repeated without varia- 
tion. When the bomber formation leader was forced 
out of position, the three fighters continued the at- 
tack on the plane which replaced the leader. The 
Japanese pilots broke off frontal attacks in various 
ways, sometimes rising over the bombers and some- 
times ducking underneath. Only once did they come 
in very close. Although four of the nine attacking 
planes were shot down, the remainder continued the 
attack until the bombers reached a thick cloud cover. 

In Malaya, Japanese army fighters used a diamond 
of four planes as a basic unit, while naval fighters 
employed a narrow-angled, unsymmetrical V forma- 
tion of three or five planes. Often the formation 
leader pulled out when encountering opposing aircraft 
and took no part in the actual combat. Presumably 
he directed the other fighters by radio, with which 
most recent Japanese planes are equipped. 

A common fighter-plane formation used for ground 
attack is a V of three planes flanked by echelons of 
two planes each — a total of seven planes. When no 
opposition is encountered from fighter aircraft, three 
of the four planes constituting the flanking echelons 
close in and form a second V behind the first, and the 
extra plane follows in a position of high-covering 
protection. If fighter opposition is encountered, it is 
met by one or both echelon pairs, while the V forma- 
tion of three planes executes the planned attack 
against ground forces. 



42 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



b. Bomber Planes 

(1) Horizontal bombing. — The tactical unit for 
horizontal bombing consists of nine planes. This type 
of attack usually precedes torpedo bombing. The air- 
craft attack at a height of about 12,000 feet, in close 
line abreast, and drop their bombs simultaneously on 
signal. 

(2) Torpedo bombing. — The tactical unit for this 
type of bombing also consists of nine planes. The 
usual tactics are for the formation to lose altitude 
gradually, out of gun range, and approach the target 
in a loose column, deploying into a wedge or ragged 
diamond formation for the attack. The torpedoes are 
loosed at an average distance of 1,500 yards from the 
target, although some were dropped at 300 yards. Al- 
titudes at the time of dropping the torpedoes varied 
up to 300 feet. Only individual attacks were made 
and always with complete disregard for antiaircraft 
fire. 

(3) Dive bombing. — The dive is shallow — to date 
the Japanese have made no vertical dives, In the 
attack on Hawaii, the angle of glide was between 45° 
and 50°. The bombers begin the glide at a height of 
3,000 to 5,000 feet and follow each other until near the 
target before releasing their bombs and climbing 
steeply immediately afterwards. Targets are struck 
from all directions almost simultaneously. After re- 
leasing their bombs, the planes employ their machine 
guns against ground installations. 

(4) Heavy bombers. — These operate in multiples of 



AIR FORCES 



43 



nine, divided into subflights of three. Generally, sta- 
tion-keeping is good, although outside flights lose dis- 
tance on turns. Sometimes the formation commander 
is in one of the extreme outside planes. 

In approaching a target, twin-engined bombers 
usually have made a long straight run in close for- 
mation. Despite heavy losses from fighter or anti- 
aircraft opposition, they have been persistent in 
attacks. 

Type 96 twin-engined heavy bombers used 500 to 
1,000-pound bombs in high-level attacks on United 
States ships in the Netherlands East Indies area. 
Each plane dropped one and frequently two bombs 
on each run. 

(5) Medium bombers. — These bombers, which fly 
at high altitudes, move in a V formation, each plane 
being separated by the width of two aircraft. Bombs 
are released at altitudes of 8,000 to 12,000 feet. High- 
altitude attacks are well synchronized with those of 
dive bombers. 

(6) Bomb delivery. — In the Philippines, bombing 
attacks usually were made by nine planes in a V 
of V's formation with No. 2 and No. 3 V's 50 to 100 feet 
above the leading V. When the planes were within 7 to 
10 miles of the bomb-release line, they changed to 
a slightly staggered formation of 1 V. Because of 
air superiority, the Japanese usually tested the wind 
drift with a parachute dropped from an observation 
plane, and made two or three practice runs before 
the actual bombing. On the bombing run the leader 



44 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



rocked his plane just before reaching the point of 
bomb release, and all planes usually released their 
bombs simultaneously. The bombers were believed to 
be equipped with a mechanical device which opened 
the bomb racks at regularly-spaced intervals. The 
course of flight was changed immediately after 
delivery of bombs. 

Japanese bombers began bombing Corregidor at a 
height of about 17,000 feet, but accurate aintiaircraft 
fire forced them to a height of 27,000 feet. 

(7) Use of lights. — In several instances, Japanese 
bomber formations have been observed to turn on lights 
during the approach and to turn them off at the bomb- 
release point. Why this was done has not been 
determined. 

c. Destruction of Fallen Planes 

The Japanese apparently seek to destroy completely 
any of their planes which have been shot down so that 
United Nations' experts will not be able to study con- 
struction details. Australian pilots at Port Moresby 
report that in each raiding formation the Japanese ap- 
parently detail one plane to dive-bomb and destroy 
planes which have been forced down. On one occasion 
a fallen plane was blasted with incendiary bombs. 

9. PURSUIT 

The Japanese use spectacular and unrelenting pur- 
suit tactics against opposition aircraft as well as the 
ground forces. When the Royal Air Force planes re- 



AIR FORCES 



45 



tired from Singapore to Jambi and Palembang in 
Sumatra, they were followed closely by Japanese air 
raiders who destroyed or crippled considerable oppos- 
ing aircraft on the ground. When R. A. F. planes 
survived an enemy attack on the airdrome at Magwe, 
Burma, and then retired to Akyab, Burma, the Japa- 
nese again pursued relentlessly, destroying the planes 
on the ground. 

10. NIGHT OPERATIONS 

Thus far, Japanese night operations in the air have 
been negligible. The Japanese have done some bomb- 
ing on moonlight nights and an occasional report has 
mentioned night-fighter interceptions. Currently, the 
enemy air force is to all purposes effective only in day- 
light, although it is believed that training for night 
flying has been, or will be, undertaken. 

11. DECEPTIONS 

(a) In Malaya, Japanese bombers blasted airdromes 
while accompanying fighters engaged numerically-in- 
ferior British fighters. The bombers flew out of sight 
until the British and Japanese fighters broke off their 
engagement and then returned to catch the British 
fighters on the ground refueling. 

(b) In several instances Japanese planes flew high 
over airdromes to draw searchlights and antiaircraft 
fire, whereupon almost immediately a single fighter 
came in at low altitude with navigation lights on and 



46 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



wheels down to strafe the airdromes. The strafing 
plane then climbed fast into the nearest cloud. 

(c) A Netherlands Bast Indies plane flew low to 
investigate some Japanese launches being towed along 
the northeast coast by "natives" who were waving a 
white flag. When the plane appeared close, it was 
shot down by light antiaircraft concealed under the 
awnings of some of the boats. 

12. AIRCRAFT DISPERSAL 

a. General 

According to reports of most observers, the Japa- 
nese generally are vulnerable in their dispersal of 
planes on the ground. Reports from the American 
Volunteer Group in China are unanimous that the 
Japanese crowd their planes on their main air bases, 
such as Hanoi, Bangkok, Shieng-mai, and Rangoon. 
Planes have been observed along the runways of these 
bases almost wing tip to wing tip, bombers on one 
side and fighters on the other. 

b. In the Philippines 

At one field in the vicinity of Manila the Japanese 
used a unique system of dispersing planes on the 
ground and protecting airdrome installations. They 
constructed over 40 landing strips (with hand labor 
and graders) some • distance from the central field. 
Two or three planes and a minimum number of oil 
drums and other servicing facilities were allotted to 
each strip. Some of the strips were located as far as 



AIR FORCES 



47 



2 miles apart, and hangers and repair facilities were 
located a considerable distance from runways at main 
fields. Such a dispersion permitted large numbers 
of Japanese fighters to take off easily while opposition 
bombers were concentrating on two or three planes 
located on one particular strip. 



Section V. PARACHUTE FORCES 



13. GENERAL 

In Septemher 1941 the Japanese were believed to 
have had three battalions and two companies of para- 
chute troops. In only one instance, at Palembang, 
Dutch Sumatra, have the Japanese used parachutists 
on a large scale. 

14. ORGANIZATION 

Each battalion consists of a headquarters staff and 
supply section (not air-borne) and three companies. 
The total strength of a battalion is about 670 men. 
(See organization chart on page 49.) 

15. QUALIFICATIONS AND PERSONNEL 

All have to attend special courses in foreign lan- 
guages and map reading, All officers are drawn from 
the air arm and must not be over 28, with the exception 
of the battalion commander, who may not be over 35. 
The battalion commander usually is a colonel. Enlisted 
men must not be over 25. 

16. EQUIPMENT 

Officers and enlisted men are provided with special 
clothing which includes fur-lined jackets, trousers, and 

48 



PARACHUTE FORCES 



49 




50 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



a hood with goggles. Officers also carry an electric 
torch and a wallet (brief case?) containing maps and 
writing material. Each enlisted man carries a bar- 
racks bag containing the following : 

Complete change of underwear; 
Spare pair of shoes ; 

Rations for 3 days, including rice, canned fish, 
canned meat, and tea. 

17. ARMAMENT 

Each battalion is believed to include approximately 
the following: 

Revolvers 360 

6.5-mm. machine carbines (probably similar to submachine 

guns) 300 

Hvy MG's 42 

13-mm. AT rifles 55 

Arisaka 1 "cannon" 9 

18. PALEMBANG OPERATIONS 

A total of about 700 Japanese parachute troops 
were dropped in an area about 12 miles square in 
the vicinity of Palembang on the morning of Febru- 
ary 14, 1941. These parachutists had only light equip- 
ment, which included some motors and machine guns. 
They were dropped from about 70 transport airplanes. 

Immediately upon landing, two groups of about 
200 men each were formed for attacks on the two 



1 It is not definitely known what type of weapon this is. Oerlikon 
20-mm. cannon are known to be in use in the Japanese army. An 80-callber 
dual-purpose antitank gun also has been reported. 



PARACHUTE FORCES 



51 



large oil refineries south of the Moesi River near 
Palembang, and another group of about 300 men was 
formed to attack the Palembang Airport, northwest 
of the city. 

The Japanese plan was to seize and occupy the refin- 
eries, prevent their destruction, and to capture the 
airport. The plan failed and practically all of the 
parachutists were killed by defending Dutch and 
British forces. The next day, however, a strong 
Japanese landing force proceeded up the Moesi River 
and captured Palembang, but by this time both re- 
fineries had been destroyed and the airport con- 
siderably damaged. 

The failure of the Japanese attack can be ascribed 
to the relatively small size of the Japanese force and 
its lack of immediate support, the vigorous resistance 
by the Dutch and British defenders, and the rapidity 
and efficiency of the defenders' demolition work. 



Section VI. COMMUNICATIONS 



19. AIR-GROUND 

Through air reconnaissance coupled with close radio 
communication with the advanced elements of the 
ground forces has enabled the Japanese frequently to 
out-maneuver their opponents. This was possible be- 
cause of their air superiority. Company commanders 
of ground forces carry portable radios with attached 
earphones. The radios are strapped to their chests 
like gas masks in the alert position. Supporting air- 
craft notify the companies when they should advance 
or halt. The company commander, in turn, waves a 
flag to planes when he moves forward and when he 
orders a halt. Such portable sets also are used to main- 
tain continuous liaison with adjacent companies, for 
communications during beach landings, and for com- 
munications from points in rear of United Nations' 
lines to Japanese headquarters. They have an effective 
range up to 35 miles. All of Japan's new planes are 
equipped with modern two-way radios. 

20. GROUND 

Signal communications from the division downward 
follow the general orthodox system of using radio, 
motorcycle, and bicycle messengers and occasionally 
visual signaling. Extreme simplicity characterizes the 

52 



COMMUNICATION'S 



53 



operation of the system — short mission orders, direct 
oral orders, and flag signals. The regimental radio 
communication system usually extends down to com- 
pany headquarters. Each company commander has a 
pool of runners for communication down to the platoon. 
Within the platoon a noncommissioned communications 
officer maintains contact between squads and the 
platoon, either orally or by use of runners. 

All Japanese commanders' tanks down to the pla- 
toon are equipped with two-way radios. 

Small armored motor launches are used to main- 
tain intercommunications during landing operations. 

21. EQUIPMENT 

Signal equipment conforms generally to that indi- 
cated in TM 30-480, Handbook on Japanese Military 
Forces. Radio equipment is well made and bears 
dates showing storage since 1935. All radio sets are 
operated by dry battery and are ruggedly constructed. 
An aircraft set functioned well after having been 
dropped more than 2,000 feet with no repair except 
the replacement of its vacuum tubes. One captured 
60-pound portable, all -wave receiver operated very 
satisfactorily. 

22. RADIO JAMMING 

Units for jamming are included in each signal regi- 
ment. Most jamming to date is reported to be on 
broadcast frequencies. However, jamming of tacti- 
cal frequencies in the range from 5 to 8 megacycles 
and of point-to-point frequencies as high as 15 mega- 



54 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



cycles lias also been reported. Jamming on point-to- 
point circuits was readily overcome by continuing 
traffic on the jammed frequency, as well as on an- 
other frequency. Methods of jamming used are the 
following : 

a. Transmission of dummy messages and call signs 
from a tape recording on a frequency corresponding 
to that to be jammed ; 

b. Transmission of a carrier wave of frequency cor- 
responding to the frequency to be jammed and modu- 
lated by raw alternating current ; 

c. The use of a howler or fluctuating continuous wave 
carrier to interfere with radiotelephone transmissions. 

In general, it may be said that the Japanese jamming 
efforts were unskilled and ineffectual. 

23. CODES AND CIPHERS 

In general, Japanese codes are of the book type with 
one-time deciphering tables. Transmissions by radio 
of bearings from ground stations to aircraft on bomb- 
ing missions are generally in the clear. Sometimes 
the Japanese use a simple three-letter code, which is 
readily broken. This code is used for economy, not 
for security. 

24. RADIO INTELLIGENCE 

The efficiency and accuracy of intercept units is in- 
dicated by Japanese attempts to masquerade radio sta- 
tions as those of their opponents, in which attempts 
they used procedure signs derived from intercepted 
messages. 



Section VII. NIGHT OPERATIONS 



25. GENERAL 

The Japanese put considerable stress on night op 
erations. At night they use much closer formations 
than during the day in order to prevent loss of contact. 
Often they dig individual slit trenches for use during 
the night, with sentries usually posted within a radius 
of 50 to 150 yards of the bivouac. To surprise and 
confuse the opposition is one of the major night ob- 
jectives, and this result is gained by silent infiltrations 
around the flanks and between defense areas. Fre- 
quently the Japanese crawl great distances at night to 
a point where they can leap upon the opposing forces 
before the latter are able to take action. 

26. CONDUCT OF THE ATTACK 

Preparatory to some night attacks, small patrols 
were sent out during the day to locate the approximate 
positions of the opposition, particularly those of heavy 
weapons. In Dutch Borneo, for example, the Jap- 
anese exposed men during the daytime to draw the 
fire of Dutch machine guns so that their positions 
could be determined for the night attack. After get- 



466701° — 42 5 



55 



56 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



ting information on these positions, the Japanese sent 
out additional small patrols early at night to deter- 
mine more exactly the Dutch defensive locations. 

After the patrols returned, the night attack began. 
Strong patrols, preceded by small guide groups which 
cut and rolled back barbed wire and removed other 
obstacles, advanced in extended order toward the 
opposition. Meanwhile, the Japanese hit on hard ob- 
jects with bamboo sticks and made vocal noises in 
imitation of machine-gun fire in order to draw the fire 
of the Dutch so that their positions could be ascer- 
tained definitely. At the same time, the deceptive 
noises caused native troops to become panicky — a 
result which the Japanese probably expected. 

Once having located the defending machine-gun 
positions, some of the Japanese crawled silently to the 
locations and disabled the crews with knives and hand 
grenades. One Dutch stronghold of 25 men was over- 
come without a shot being fired. Other Japanese, 
meanwhile, crept up to rifle troops and disarmed them 
with jiu jitsu tricks. Some of the defenders were 
able to escape by kicking away the hands that clutched 
them. Many casualties resulted from oral orders given 
by Dutch officers, for the Japanese, trained in the 
Dutch language, overheard the orders and shot the 
officers. In several instances some of the Japanese 
spoke out in Dutch and asked for the commander 
who, upon answering, was shot. When the Japanese 
had neutralized the Dutch outer defenses, they sought 
to penetrate further with strong patrols. 



NIGHT OPERATIONS 



57 



After some of these initial night fights in Borneo 
they withdrew 500 to 1,200 yards, and Japanese naval 
guns bombarded the defending positions the next day 
while the infantry, except for normal patrol duties, 
stayed inactive. 

Many of the Japanese had copies of all the Dutch 
secret maps, and before landing they apparently had 
planned their attacks thoroughly. 



Section VIII. CAMOUFLAGE 



27. GENERAL 

The Japanese have made full use of camouflage, using 
nets for personnel, horses, and equipment and adding 
jungle foliage to complete the job. 

28. FOR PERSONNEL 

Each soldier has body and head nets, either or 
both of which may be worn, according to circum- 
stances. The nets are made of a greenish-colored 
straw fiber cord or ordinary twine with a square 
mesh slightly less than 2 inches in size. The body 
net is 1 by iy 2 yards, and the head net fits snugly 
over a cap or metal helmet. 

29. FOR MACHINE GUNS 

This net is made of heavier material than those 
already mentioned, and it has a slightly larger mesh 
and is of the same color. 

30. FOR ARTILLERY 

Similar in texture to that of the machine gun, the 
artillery net is large enough to cover the piece and 

58 



CAMOUFLAGE 59 

its personnel. The net is attached to the ends of 
poles or other convenient supports at a height suf- 
ficient to enable the piece to be operated unhindered. 

31 . FOR VEHICLES 

Vehicles usually are camouflaged with paint and local 
vegetation, and sometimes they are covered with nets. 
Armored force vehicles normally are painted ir- 
regularly in indeterminate shades of khaki, yellow, 
brown, and green. Some of the ordinary motor trucks 
are painted like the armored vehicles, though usually 
they have been of a sandy khaki color. 

32. FOR AIRCRAFT 

Camouflage of aircraft is practiced generally and 
apparently with good effect. Many fighter planes are 
painted jet black. Type 96 heavy bombers frequently 
have been camouflaged with irregular curling lines 
of light gray and light green. Type 97 reconnais- 
sance planes have been observed painted a dark gray. 



Section IX. SUPPLY 



33. GENERAL 

The Japanese supply system for jungle warfare is 
marked by simplicity. Impedimenta have been light- 
ened, thus enabling troops to move fast arid with great 
ease. In all of their fighting the J apanese have carried 
simple, compact rations ; light, small-caliber arms and 
ammunition; and light clothing; and they have em- 
ployed a minimum of transportation. In many in- 
stances the transportation for units as large as a com- 
pany was carried out by natives impressed into service 
as carriers or by fifth columnists. 

34. FOOD 

Each Japanese soldier usually carries on his person 
sufficient food to sustain him for 5 days in the field, 
and some who infiltrated have fought for a week with- 
out recourse to food or ammunition supply trains. All 
have shown marked ability to live off the country; 
in fact, captured Japanese orders point out the neces- 
sity for this in order to conserve regular supplies. In 
some instances individuals and small infiltration units 
killed and cooked dogs, goats, and other small animals 

60 



SUPPLY 



61 



to supplement their emergency rations. The 5-day 
emergency ration includes: 

a. One-half pound of hard candy; 

b. One can of coffee; 

c. One package of concentrated food ; 

d. Vitamin pills; 

e. One package of hardtack ; 

f. One 5-inch-long sack of rice. 

Each soldier is responsible for his own cooking, but 
generally the men of a squad cook on a cooperative 
basis. No special cooking stove or other cooking ap- 
paratus is carried. Often food is cooked in the morn- 
ing to last for the day. Sometimes only rice and salt 
are available. Sugar, considered a luxury, is procured 
locally. Looting is condoned. 

When men on the front lines are pinned down for 
considerable periods, ration details follow the 1 simple 
expedient of tossing them rice balls wrapped in straw. 

35. WATER 

Normally this is carried to the front lines in large 
canteens strapped on the backs of supply-unit sol- 
diers. In addition, for refilling the canteens of men 
in firing positions, some soldiers are individually 
equipped with a fairly large-sized water-bag having 
a small hose attachment. The arms of all these car- 
riers are free to help them over rough terrain or 
through jungles. For the purpose of purifying water, 
each soldier carries a miniature listerbag, shaped 



62 



JAPANESE "WARFARE 



like a three-fingered, glove. He also carries chlorine 
for purifying his drinking water. 

36. MEDICINE 

The individual soldier carries quinine, which he 
takes to prevent malaria, and laxative and digestive 
pills. Japanese medical personnel also have used 
the leaves of the chirata plant (found in southern 
Asia) to combat malaria. They have used Nepalese 
herbs to prevent dysentery and various tropical 
diseases. 

37. AMMUNITION 

This is carried in boxes as shoulder packs, thus 
leaving the carrier's arms free for negotiating diffi- 
cult terrain and permitting greater freedom of action 
under fije. 



Section X. EQUIPMENT 



38. INFANTRY 

a. Pistols 

The Japanese have two types of pistols. One, 
known as pattern 26 (1893), is described in the Hand- 
book on Japanese Military Forces (TM 30-480). The 
other, known as the 8-mm. 14 type, was first observed in 
the Malayan campaign. 

b. Machine Guns 

The Japanese are using two types of machine guns, a 
light and a heavy gun. Both are improvements over 
similar equipment adopted several years ago. 

(1) Light type. — This gun was designed to replace 
the Nambu light machine gun, Model 1922. 2 First ob- 
served during the Malayan campaign, it is known as 
Type 96, and is patterned after the French Hotchkiss 
light machine gun, although it incorporates several 

1 Notes on Japanese equipment in this section are supplementary to in- 
formation given in TM 30-480 (Handbook on Japanese Military Forces) 
and include modifications and changes noted by observers of the United 
Nations. 

' For details of the model 1922 gun, see TM 30-480. 

63 



64 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



features of the British Bren gun. It has a sling, at- 
tached to the butt stock and to the gas-cylinder bracket, 
for the purpose of carrying the weight from the 
shoulder. This feature enables the gun to be fired 
from a position generally used in operating a subma- 
chine gun, and it is believed that the weapon may have 
been referred to erroneously as a "Tommy" gun in 
previous reports on Japanese warfare. "Tommy" 
guns are not believed to be part of J apanese organiza- 
tional equipment. However, it is possible that a lim- 
ited number, purchased from foreign powers, may have 
been scattered among advance units fighting in the 
jungles. 

The light machine gun is gas-operated, magazine- 
fed, and air-cooled, and may be fired automatically 
or semiautomatically. It has a carrying handle con- 
nected in front of the magazine, a bayonet attach- 
ment, and a bipod mount. The bipod has two posi- 
tions, either folded or perpendicular to the gun barrel. 
The bipod has no adjustment for height. Other char- 
acteristics include the following: 

Weight 19.18 lbs. 

Weight of barrel 5.83 lbs. 

Length, over-all 42 in. 

Caliber 6.5-mm. (0.256 in.). 

Rifling 4 grooves, right twist. 

Muzzle velocity 2,400 ft. per sec. (approximately). 

Cyclic rate of fire ;__ 550 rounds per min. (approximately). 

Bipod mount 16 in. high. 

Magazine capacity 30 rounds (approximately). 

(2) Heavy type.- — The heavy machine gun, 7.7-mm. 
(0.303 in.), was designed to replace model 3 (1914), 



EQUIPMENT 



65 



which was 6.5-mm. caliber. 3 It is of the Hotchkiss 
type and is air-cooled. The gun is mounted on a 
cross-head stand which is supported on collapsible 
tripod legs. The height of the stem can be adjusted. 
A special mounting is provided for using the gun 
against aircraft. 

The gun and tripod usually are transported on one 
horse. Another horse carries four boxes of ammuni- 
tion. The boxes are of two sizes, one having a capac- 
ity of 450 rounds and the other 600 rounds. The gun 
can fire 3,000 to 3,500 rounds continuously before be- 
coming overheated. 

Other characteristics of the gun are as follows: 

Weight of gun 61.6 lbs. 

Weight of tripod 60.5 lbs. 

Length of gun 43 in. 

Length of bore 25 in. 

Rifling 4 grooves, right twist 

Life of barrel 1(K),(K)0 rounds (approximately) 

Muzzle velocity 2,700 ft. per sec. 

Cyclic rate of fire 450 rounds per min. 

Maximum effective rate of fire 200-250 rounds per min. 

Maximum range 4,587 yds. 

Most effective range 850 yds. 

Traversing angle 360° 

(approximately 35 ° graduated in mils) 

Maximum angle of elevation 11° 

Rear sight Graduated from 300 to 2,700 meters 



c. 



Mortars 



At least two types of mortars, possibly three, have 
been used by the Japanese to date. It is known defi- 
nitely that they have been using an 81-mm. mortar, 



For details of the model 3 gun, see TM 30-480. 



66 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



similar in many respects to the United States 81-mm. 
mortar, and a 90-mm. chemical mortar. The British 
reported the capture of a 125-mm. mortar in Burma, 
but no details have been received. 

(1) 81-mm. This mortar has the following char- 
acteristics : 

Kange— 328 yds. with 7.2-lb. bomb; 1,312 yds. with 14.3-lb. 

bomb. 
Weight— 129.2 lbs. 

(2) 90-mm. This chemical mortar has the following 
characteristics : 

Maximum range — 4,155 yds. 
Minimum range— 612 yds. 

Weight of bomb, including a chemical filling— 11 lbs. 10 oz. 
Weight of weapon — 350 lbs. 8 oz. 

Propellant — apparently a ballistite cartridge; it has six 
charges. 

d. Grenades. 

Two types of hand grenades, both of cylindrical 
shape, have been used extensively by the Japanese. 
One is known as the 91 type and the other as the 97 
type. The 91 type has a time fuze of 6 to 7 seconds. 
The fuze is ignited by tapping it sharply on some 
hard surface after removal of the safety pin. The 
97 type is detonated by the percussion created when 
the grenade strikes its object. 

In addition, it is reported that some use has been 
made of a hand grenade of the ' ' potato-masher" 
type — a cylindrical cast-iron pot which is 2 inches 
long, 2 inches outside diameter, and 1% inches inside 



EQUIPMENT 



67 



diameter. It is open at one end and closed at the 
other. Inserted in this shell is a charge consisting 
of 2 ounces of lyddite. A 5-inch-long wooden handle 
is screwed to the top of the iron cylinder. The 
grenade weighs about 1 pound, 3 ounces. 

A gas grenade also has been developed by the 
Japanese, but, as far as is known, it has not been 
used. The gas used is hydrocyanic acid, which is 
classified as a casualty agent. Tests conducted with 
duplicates of the Japanese grenade indicate that a 
tank hit by one of them at vulnerable openings would 
be filled with a concentration of the gas 20 times 
the amount necessary to kill the occupants unless they 
were wearing adequate gas masks. The gas, which has 
a characteristic odor of bitter almonds, is highly vola- 
tile and is not considered very dangerous outdoors 
or in a large open space. The grenade, according to 
information found on prisoners, is designed for use 
against tanks and pillboxes. It is not possible to 
get a high concentration of the gas inside a tank 
unless the grenade strikes at or near an opening. 
The grenade consists of about 1 pint of the acid in 
a round flasklike glass container. Upon impact the 
container breaks and the fluid acid vaporizes quickly. 
The M4, M8, and M9A1 canisters of service gas masks 
issued to United States troops give protection if the 
mask has been properly fitted to the wearer and is 
worn at the time a grenade of this type breaks. Can- 
isters of the gas masks should be replaced as soon 
as possible after the attack. 



68 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



e. Grenade Discharger 

A grenade discharger, known as the 10-year type, 
model 1921, was used by the Japanese in the Malayan 
campaign. This type is of 50-mm. caliber and has a 
range of from 65 to 250 yards. It has a smooth-bore 
barrel 10 inches long and weighs 5% pounds un- 
loaded. The discharger is muzzle-loaded and is fired 
by a striker which is operated by a lever outside of 
the discharger body. The weapon is fired from the 
ground, where it rests on a small base plate. The 
grenade fired from it weighs a little less than 1 pound. 

f. Antitank Bombs 

The Japanese are believed to have three types of 
antitank bombs. One consists of a soda-pop bottle 
filled with gasoline and fitted with a fuze and stopper. 
Another has a magnetized metal covering, hemi- 
sphere-shaped, and sticks to a metal surface. It ex- 
plodes 5 seconds after the safety pin has been re- 
moved. The third type, very similar to the second, 
consists of a metal disk, to the outer edges of which 
small magnetized explosive charges adhere. It also 
explodes after 5-seconds' contact. The charges can 
be utilized individually in much the same fashion 
as hand grenades are used. 

39. ARTILLERY 
a. General 

Before the present conflict the Japanese were known 
to have numerous types of artillery (see TM 30-480). 



EQUIPMENT 



69 



At least one new type of field artillery^— possibly 
three — has been reported since the war began. Reli- 
able sources credited the Japanese with using an 88- 
mm. howitzer in the Philippines and a 77-mm. howitzer 
in Burma. However, no details have been received to 
confirm their existence or use. 

b. New Field Piece 

The Japanese are known to have a new split-trail 
field gun designed primarily for use against tanks. 
The gun is believed to be 75-mm. It has muzzle brakes 
and pneumatic tires, and the trails have driven spades 
to stabilize the piece for firing. The estimated range 
is 10,000 yards. The gun closely resembles the French 
Schneider field gun and may been purchased from the 
French. 

c. 240-mm. Gun 

In the Philippines the Japanese used 240-mm. rail- 
road guns — they were known to have possessed 30 of 
these. The guns are adapted to transportation on 
either standard or narrow-gauge railroads. 

A 240-mm. shell recovered in the Philippines had 
the following characteristics: 

(1) Projectile casing — manufactured in Hiroshima, 
1941 ; base not streamlined ; narrow rotating band near 
the base ; 

(2) Projectile filling — TNT ; 

(3) Weight — approximately 440 lbs. ; 

(4) Fuze-base type, made of brass. 



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JAPANESE WARFARE 



d. 20-mm. Antiaircraft Gun 

This gun was manufactured origally by the 
Oerlikon Arms Co., Switzerland. Its characteristics 
are as follows: 

Diameter of bore 20-mm. (.78-in.). 

Weight of gun in action. _ 836 lbs. 

Length of barrel 45 in. 

Muzzle velocity 2,720 ft. per sec. 

Maximum horizontal 

range 5,450 yds. 

Maximum vertical range-. 12,200 ft. 

Weight of projectile 55 lbs. 

Practical rate of fire 120 rounds per min. 

Elevation 10° to 85°. 

Traverse 360°. 



e; 75-mm. Antiaircraft Gun 

This gun, model 1928, is an improvement over a 
similar weapon, model 1922. Its characteristics are 
as follows: 

Weight 5,390 lbs. 

Muzzle velocity 2,450 ft. per sec. 

Maximum horizontal 

range 15,200 yds. 

Maximum vertical range- . 32,800 ft. 

Practical rate of fire 15 rounds per min. 

Weight of projectile 14.3 lbs. 

Elevation 0° to 85°. 

Traverse 360°. 

Length of barrel — 10 ft. 11 in. (approximately). 

Transportation Apparently tractor-drawn. 



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71 



40. ARMORED VEHICLES 

a. General 

The Japanese have more than a dozen models of 
tanks, 3 some with only slight differences, and they ap- 
pear to be concentrating on five main types, namely: 
tankettes (or small armored reconnaissance vehicles), 
light tanks, cruiser tanks, heavy medium tanks, and 
light amphibian tanks. These are modifications of 
earlier models, and they have incorporated features 
from United States, British, French, and Russian 
types. Some of the tanks are said to be fitted with air- 
plane engines, giving a high power-weight ratio. 

b. Types 

The following types of Japanese tanks have been en- 
countered since the start of the current war : 

(1) Tankette. — This is a light-tracked armored ve- 
hicle with one machine gun mounted in a turret. It 
weighs 3 to 4 tons and has two bogies and four rubber- 
tired wheels on each side. The crew consists of a 
driver and a machine-gunner. Late models of this 
tank are believed to be amphibian. 

(2) Light tank {model 35). — This type weighs 7 tons, 
and carries one 37-mm. gun and two machine guns. 
One machine gun is located forward in the hull and the 
other aft in the turret. The 37-mm. gun fires armor- 
piercing shells. The tank has four bogie wheels, in 

3 For additional information on Japanese tanks, see tables on pages 4 
and 5 of Information Bulletin No. 8, M. I. S., Notes on Japanese Warfare, 
and TM 30-480. 

466701° — 42 6 



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JAPANESE WARFARE 



pairs, mounted in two bogies and fitted with thick, solid- 
rubber tires. The bogie wheels are about the same 
size as the front and rear sprockets. They are not 
protected by skirting. The track is supported at the 
top by two rollers. The crew probably consists of four : 
a driver, a turret gunner, and two machine-gunners. 
The length of the tank is roughly estimated to be 15 or 
16 feet and the width about 7 feet. 

(3) Medium tank (cruiser tank). — This type, 
manned by four men, weighs 15 tons and is armed 
with a 47-mm. gun and two machine guns. It has 
^-inch armor on the sides and 1-inch armor on the 
front plate and turret. The turret has a 360° trav- 
erse. The tank has six bogie wheels, evenly spaced 
and slightly smaller than the front sprocket and rear 
idler. The wheels have thick solid rubber tires but no 
protective skirting. The tanks make no more noise 
than a large used truck. Their tracks are supported at 
the top by three rollers. The front and rear rollers 
have flanges or rims to prevent the tracks from slipping 
off, but the center roller has no outside flange and is 
hardly visible from a distance. The maximum speed 
is believed to be about 25 miles per hour. The length 
of the tank is believed to be about 22 feet and the 
width about 8% feet. A prominent feature on at 
least some of these is a circular handrail around the 
top of the turret to enable the tank to carry about 10 
extra men in a field emergency. 

(4) Flame-throwing tank. — In Malaya, the Japa- 
nese had a flame-thrower in an Ishi-108 tank, which is 
believed to weigh 38 tons. Besides the flame-thrower, 



EQUIPMENT 



73 



the tank carried two 37-mm. guns and two machine 
guns. There was no report of this tank's having 
been used in combat. 

(5) Tank trailer. — This is a small tracked vehicle 
with one pair of bogie wheels on each side. The sus- 
pension is of the rocker-arm type, similar to that used 
on Japanese tanks. The trailer, towed by various 
types of armored vehicles, is utilized to transport am- 
munition and various other types of supplies. The 
capacity load of the trailer is about 3,000 pounds. 

(6) Armored cars. — Although several old types of 
armored cars are still in use, the type generally em- 
ployed by the army is the Sumida six-wheel car-trolley, 
which is armed with one machine gun and has seven 
rifle or light automatic slits. By changing the wheel 
rims (which takes only 10 minutes), the car may be 
transformed into an armored trolley for running on 
railways. Railway guard troops use the vehicles, but 
to what extent is not known. 

41. BOATS AND SHIPS 
a. Special Transports 

The Japanese have developed a special type of 
transport to carry troops and small landing craft. 
The transports have sliding or rolling doors on their 
sides, permitting landing craft berthed on rollers to 
be rolled into the water fully loaded with men and 
equipment. At least some of the transports also have 
rear slide hatches, or ramps with which to load and 
unload heavy equipment. 



74 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



b. Landing Craft 

Six types of these have been developed. Most of 
them are featured by double keels (for stability and 
strength) and by armored bows which can be dropped 
to permit field guns and small tanks to be run off the 
boats onto the beach. The armored fronts are capable 
of stopping 50-caliber bullets, but 30-caliber fire will 
penetrate the sides. The different types and some 
additional characteristics of the boats are as follows: 

(1) Type A. — This is a large, open boat on the bow 
of which is a landing ramp which falls forward onto 
the beach, thus enabling guns to be wheeled off. The 
engine and coxswain usually are protected by bullet- 
proof plating. It is used by main landing forces. 
The approximate overall length of the boat is 50 
feet and the length at the water line is 41 feet. 
The length of the beam is 12 or 13 feet. The boats are 
propelled by low-speed two- or four-cyclinder gaso- 
line or Diesel engines and attain a speed of about 
10 knots. It is estimated that the boats can carry 
110 to 120 fully-equipped men. 

(2) Type B. — This boat, small and of open type 
and holding 50 to 60 men, is used by the initial cov- 
ering party. It has an over-all length of 20 to 40 
feet and is powered with a two- or four-cylinder 
gasoline or Diesel engine. Only some of the boats 
have bullet-proof shields and light machine guns 
in the bow. 

(3) Type C. — This is an armored motor launch 
used for close support, reconnaissance, and mainte- 



EQUIPMENT 



75 



nance of communications. It is approximately 40 
feet long and has a beam of 12 to 13 feet. The 
boat, constructed of steel plate, is believed capable 
of attaining a speed of 15 knots. 

(4) Type D. — It is used solely as a towboat, sup- 
plementing Type A. The boat has an approximate 
over-all length of 30 feet and a beam of 10 feet. It 
is constructed of wood, similar to a standard motor 
launch. 

(5) Type E. — This is an airplane-propeller-driven 
boat, about 50 feet long and 10 feet wide, which was 
designed for use in shallow or weed-infested water. 
About 10 feet of the forward underwater body rises 
above the water when the boat is going full speed. 
The draft at light load appears to be not over 2 feet. 

(6) Type F. — It is constructed of steel plates and is 
of two sizes — 30 feet over-all and 40 feet. It has a beam 
of 12 feet and a speed of about 9 knots. 

c. Motor Torpedo Boats 

The Japanese were reported several months ago to be 
building 70 motor torpedo boats. Some of them un- 
doubtedly have been completed. Characteristics of the 
boats are as follows : 

(1) Length: 32 ft. 6 in. to 49 ft. 

(2) Beam : 6 ft. 6 in. to 9 ft. 9 in. 

3) Body: Flat bottom, steel frame, wood planking. . 

4) Motor: Radial-cooled aircraft engine with reduction 
gear and angle drive up to 400 ground-maximum 
horsepower. 

(5) Armament: 2 torpedo tubes mounted on each side, 4 
depth charges, 1 machine gun. 

(6) Crew : 3 or 4. 



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JAPANESE WARFARE 



(7) Speed : 52 m. p. h. or over. 

(8) Endurance : 10 hrs. at full speed if about 1,150 gals. 

of gasoline are carried. 

d. Tonnage Calculations 

Various tonnage calculations for sea movement of 
Japanese forces, armament, and supplies have been 
estimated to be as follows : 

(1) Personnel and horses. — The tonnage allowances 
for troops and horses vary according to the length of 
the voyage, route taken, and season of the year. In 
each case a margin is allowed for a certain quantity of 
stores, coal, ammunition, and vehicles. 



(2) Materiel. — For every 1,000 tons of Japanese 
shipping, various vehicles (loaded), tanks, and other 
equipment can be shipped as shown in the below: 



For each man_ 
For each horse 



Long sea 
voyages 

5 tons 
10 tons 



Short sea 
voyages 
(8 days) 

3 tons 
9 tons 



Trucks (3-ton) 

Trucks (30-cwt. — approximately 1% tons) 

Trucks (1-ton) 

Tractors (field artillery) 

Cars 

Ambulances 

Howitzers (105-mm.) 

Infantry guns (37-mm.) 

Tankettes 

Light tanks 

Medium tanks 



... 30 



50 
100 
30 
25 
15 



12 
23 
40 
50 
40 



(3) Ship dimensions in relation to tonnage. — The 
length, breadth, and draught of Japanese vessels in 
relation to tonnage is given in the following table: 



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77 



Draught Length Breadth Approximate 



feet 


feet 


feet 


tonnage 


15 


230 


33 


1,000 


19 


280 


39 


2,000 


21 


830 


44 


3,000 


23 


860 


48 


4,000 


25 


390 


51 


5,000 


26 


420 


53 


6,000 


27 


440 


56 


7,000 


28 


450 


57 


8,000 


28 


460 


58 


9,000 


29 


470 


59 


10,000 



42. AIR FORCE 4 
a. Aircraft 

Until the present time, the Japanese have used five 
types of bombers, five types of fighters, four types of 
floatplanes, and one type of flying boat, as follows : 

• (1) Bombers: 

Navy Type 96, heavy 

Navy Type 97, torpedo 

Army Type 97, heavy 

Army Type 98, heavy 

Navy Type 99, dive 

Navy Type (probably) 0, medium 5 



4 See TM 30-38 for known information on Japanese planes prior to 
March 1941. 

8 This is a new type of medium bomber which was observed for the 
first time in Australia. Like Japan's best fighter plane, the bomber is 
given an "0" designation, which means it was designed in 1940. The 
plane resembles the Japanese Mitsubishi Type 96 heavy bomber except 
that it is slightly larger and that its wing tips are rounded. It has 2 
radial engines and is equipped with one 20-mm. cannon, in the extreme 
tail; one 7.7-mm. machine gun located in the extreme nose, and one 
7.7-mm. machine gun in each side blister, about midway of the tall edge 
of the wing and the tail. The plane can carry one torpedo. 



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JAPANESE WARFARE 



(2) Fighters: 

Navy Type 97 
Navy Type 6 
Navy Type 96 
Army Type 97 
Army Me. 109 (German) 

(3) Floatplanes: 

Type 97, fighter 
Type 97, reconnaissance 
Type 95, reconnaissance 
Type 94, reconnaissance 

(4) Flying boats. — The only one of these observed to date is 
Type 97. 

b. Bombs 

Japanese bombs are classified as army or naval. 
They usually consist of three parts: nose, body, and 
tail — either welded together, or, in addition to being 
welded, riveted, screwed, or double-screwed together. 
None of their bombs is cast or forged in one piece. 
Also, the three parts of the bomb are of different 
thickness and therefore have different degrees of frag- 
mentation. Poor detonation is -frequent. Scattered 
powder, large fragments, or undetonated bodies are 
found near bomb craters after a bombardment. 

The size of bombs used by the Japanese ranges 
from a 2-pound antipersonnel bomb to 1,000-pound 
demolition bombs. Large numbers of 100-pound frag- 
mentation types have been dropped as well as a small 
number of 500-pounders. A dual-purpose bomb, 

"From the point Of view of performance, this plane, which is highly 
maneuverable, Is considered Japan's best, and it is comparable to the 
leading United Nations' fighters. It has a 900-horsepower motor and is 
armed with two 20-callber cannon and two fixed machine guns. 



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79 



weighing 110.23 pounds, was used in Malaya. It is 
made of both high explosive and incendiary material. 
The incendiary part consists of 1 by % inch cylinders, 
which are filled with black rubber impregnated with 
phosporus. The bomb explodes upon impact and its 
8-inch drawn-steel casing shatters into fragments 
which cover a radius of 50 yards. Water will ex- 
tinguish the pellets. Upon drying out, however, they 
will reignite up to 10 hours after the bomb has ex- 
ploded. The Japanese also used white phosphorus as 
a filler in bombs for its incendiary effect. 

The British Navy reports that the Japanese have 
dropped delayed-action incendiary bombs by para- 
chute. The bombs, with a delayed action up to 12 
hours, were painted black and had a small red band 
6 inches from the nose. They are 6 inches in dia- 
meter and 3!/2 feet long. 

Over Corregidor the Japanese used a new type of 
bomb, which burst with a huge flame. Two of the 
bombs dropped on April 3 exploded about 500 feet 
above the ground. 

c. Detachable Gasoline Tank 

The Japanese are using an extra, detachable gaso- 
line tank on some (probably all) of their fighter 
planes. The type 97 fighter, for instance, carries 70 
gallons of gasoline in a fixed tank and 66 in the de- 
tachable tank. Use of the latter tank is calculated 
roughly to increase the range of the fighters by 560 
miles. 



80 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



d. Observation Balloons 

These were used by the Japanese during the sieges 
of Singapore and Corregidor. No details of their 
make-up are available. 

e. Barrage Balloons 

The Japanese were utilizing barrage balloons in 
the Tokyo area when it was bombed by United States 
Army bombers recently. 

f. Two- Way Radio 

A Japanese two-way aircraft radio set removed 
from a crashed plane showed that it was designed 
and constructed to perform very efficiently, and that 
good materials and components were used through- 
out. Most of the parts appeared to be of Japanese 
make and apparently were copies of United States 
manufacture. The construction showed both United 
States and German influence. The set has a positive 
radius of communication of about 450 miles. The 
reception and transmission range is 300 to 500 kilo- 
cycles and 5,000 to 10,000 kilocycles, respectively. 
The set was detached when found, and it is not known 
from what type of plane it came. However, previous 
information indicated that the set was designed for 
use in light bombers and long-range fighters. 

(1) Receiver. — The receiver is a superheterodyne 
and has: 

(a) One ra,dio-frequency stage, first detector; one 



EQUIPMENT 81 

intermediate frequency stage, second detector; power 
output ; 

(b) Plug-in coils for various bands of frequencies; 

(c) Beat-frequency oscillator for continuous wave 
telegraphy. 

(2) Transmitter. — The transmitter, which could 
not be removed from the mounting chassis, has the 
following characteristics : 

(a) Plug-in coils for various bands of frequencies ; 

(b) Crystal-controlled (6,200 kilocycles). 

(3) Generator. — No clue could be obtained as to 
whether the generator was run by a windmill or a bat- 
tery, but the voltage regulator (in the bottom right- 
hand corner of the transmitter panel) was fitted in 
the very best technical manner. The supply of the 
fitting indicates that the generator may be battery- 
driven. 

(4) Voice Transmission. — The voice can be trans- 
mitted straight or " scrambled." 

43. MINES 

In the Philippines the Japanese used a light, disk- 
type road mine. 

44. CLOTHING 
a. General 

The dress of the Japanese soldier has not been uni- 
form or exactly military in some respects — probably 
due in a large measure to clothing improvised to meet 
particular tactical situations. For instance, white 



82 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



clothing of varying types were used in the Malayan 
campaign so that the Japanese would not mistake the 
identity of each other in the jungle. Sometimes Japa- 
nese were seen dressed almost completely in white; 
sometimes they wore a white vest-type garment over 
shirts ; on occasion they wore white bands on their caps 
or arms. In all cases clothing was very light. 

b. Uniform 

The regular uniform is khaki or khaki-green, with 
the trousers either tapered or tied at the ankles. Naval 
landing troops normally wear a grey-green colored 
uniform. On reconnaissance and infiltration missions 
the Japanese frequently wore only shirts, shorts, and 
light shoes with rubber soles. For night operations 
men on patrols stripped except for shorts or a loin 
cloth. Bicycle troops wore white undershirts over 
khaki or green shirts, and about half of them wore 
trousers and the others shorts of varying descriptions. 

c. Headgear 

These include skull caps, peaked caps, topees (trop- 
ical hats), and metal helmets. The topee sometimes is 
worn over the metal helmet. The naval landing troops 
wear the metal helmet with an anchor on the front. 
Army troops have a star on their helmets. 

d. Footgear 

The types vary. Besides conventional shoes, for 
special missions some wear light rubber-soled sneakers 



EQUIPMENT 



83 



of the athletic type. Others wear hobnailed shoes to 
facilitate movement over rough terrain. 

e. "Sennimbari" (1,000 Stitches) 

This is a red sash worn around the waist and under 
the uniforms by a few Japanese soldiers. It is sup- 
posed to confer upon the soldier luck, courage, and 
possibly immunity from the opposition fire. One 
thousand stitches are used to make the sash. Members 
of the Japanese Patriotic Women's Association stand 
at street corners in Japan and ask passersby to make 
one stitch — thus 1,000 persons help to make a sash. A 
slogan on the sash reads: "Buun Chokyu" (" Everlast- 
ing Success in War"). 

f. Individual Items 

Usually the Japanese soldier carries a minimum of 
equipment in addition to arms and ammunition. He 
wears a leather belt and a canvas haversack with an 
attached bag for personal belongings. Small en- 
trenching tools are part of the normal equipment. 
Also, rubber belts which can be inflated for use in 
crossing rivers are usually carried. 

g. Sniper's Equipment 

Eeports from the Philippines indicate that the 
Japanese sniper carries the following equipment: 

Gas mask, green combination mosquito net, camou- 
flage hood covering his helmet, head, and shoulders; 
green corded net to camouflage the rest of his body; 



84 



JAPANESE WARFARE 



black wire eye-screen for protection from sun glare; 
coil of rope to use in climbing and tying himself to 
trees; 5-inch-long sack of rice; small bag of hardtack; 
one-half pound of hard candy; package of concen- 
trated food; can of field rations, can of coffee; can 
of vitamin pills; can of chlorine to purify water; 
mess kit; canteen; antidote for mustard gas; quinine; 
stomach pills; gauze pads, roll and triangular band- 
ages; spare socks; gloves; toothbrush; flashlight with 
rotating varicolored lenses (one color apparently for 
recognition signal) ; and six spare lenses for eyeholes 
of gas mask (some usuable in subzero weather). 



11.3 GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: l«42